Business opens again to delight of Selmeston villagers

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A restaurant in Selmeston has re-opened almost two years after it closed.

The Huntly family has moved into the Grade II listed former Sillets Cottege Restaurant, which closed in May 2011.

Church Farmhouse, Selmeston, reopened.''Michelle and Tim Huntly and family

Church Farmhouse, Selmeston, reopened.''Michelle and Tim Huntly and family

The 16 century building has been reopened as the Church Farm Restaurant and Bar following a redecoration.

Chef Tim Huntly said the new restaurant would focus on local produce.

He will be joined in running the business by his wife Michelle and sons Maximillian and Lucas.

The business opened for the first time earlier this month to the delight of the village’s residents, said Mr Huntly.

He said: “We opened on the Friday and had a big following from people in the village who all told me they were delighted it was open again.

“It was a pity that it was empty for a couple of years but now my family have moved in and opened it as a restaurant and bar.

“It was one of those places that had a massive following in the past. We were living in the village and when it came up I went for it.”

The 47-year-old added: “I’ve been looking for a venue that’s free of any ties from pub companies and free from any control so we can get the local produce and choose the beer people want, so that’s really what’s inspired me to do it.

“It’s nice when you get a place that’s been shut for a couple of years back up and running.

“It’s something that will help regenerate the area by using local produce, apposed to the stories of processed food that seems to be big in the media, we are using local products like fish from Newhaven .”

My Huntly is a chef de cuisine.

He trained in Brighton before moving to Switzerland for the ski seasons.

He and his family ran a chalet business in that country, where he used to cook for guests as well as being a ski instructor.

The building with outbuildings and around 2.5 acres was on sale for offers in excess of £825,000

The original farmhouse dates back to the 16th Century with Victorian and more recent additions, all being of mellow brick construction with a tiled roof. The property was converted some 35 years ago and had been run as a successful restaurant business and tea rooms.