Update – 27th November 2020

Post Lockdown opening
It was disappointing news yesterday for the Great Bromley Cross.   We will be in Tier 2 when we come out of lockdown on Wednesday 2nd December which means we will not be able to serve alcoholic drinks unless we serve a “substantial meal” .  Unfortunately at this time we are not in a position to do that but we have plans to re-open following the review which is due to take place on 16th December.   

We have to assume that we will still be in Tier 2 up to Xmas and the same restrictions above will apply, but we would like to show off the efforts we have made to decorate the pub for Christmas by opening on Friday 18th and Saturday 19th December serving meals so you can come down and see us.  

This will be on a booking only basis through our booking system and just to remind you bookings can only be made 6 days in advance of the date required.   

However, there are still restrictions under Tier 2 which you need to follow.
You will not be able to sit inside with anyone outside your household or support bubble. Outside the rule of six still applies and you may sit with up to six people from six households, and as mentioned above, all attendees will be required to have a “substantial meal” at inside and outside tables. 

The good news is that we will be opening the Wednesday Morning Coffee Shop on Wednesday 2nd December and every Wednesday up to Christmas as we are allowed to serve hot non-alcohol drinks under the new restrictions.  The Post Office and Library will be in attendance.  The Post Office now offers a good selection of Christmas Cards, Gift Wrap, Tags, Gift Ribbon etc. together with Parcel/Sellotape and a variety of calendars.  So come down and have a CoffeeCake and a Chat whilst you Choose but again please use the booking system to book a table and please adhere to the Tier 2 restrictions.

We will have our ears open when the next review is announced and if there is any movement in what Tier we are in we will of course act accordingly and update you with our Christmas opening times.

Updated Corona Virus Restrictions 17/10/2020

From Saturday 17th October, Essex will move to Tier 2 or High level restrictions. This means that unfortunately only members of the same household, or one other adult forming a support bubble, may meet indoors.

Any bookings from Sunday 18th October will be affected by these new rules. We will continue providing table service only, and closing the pub at 22:00 as per existing rules.

Please remember that you must wear a face covering (which covers both your nose and mouth) when entering or leaving the pub, as well as moving around the pub.

We thank you for your continued support during these difficult times!

Wednesday Morning Coffee Shop

Our Wednesday morning Coffee Shop will be opening again on 26th August, serving coffee and cake from 10am to 12pm. We have a limited number of tables which have been placed for social distancing and a table service will be in operation.  There is no need to book but if you would like us to reserve you a table please message us on bookings@greatbromleycross.co.uk .  The Post Office and Library will also be open.  We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday.

Please note payment is by card only (no cash).  

We are opening the doors….

  • We are looking forward to welcoming you back on Friday 31st July.   For starters. we will be opening on Friday evenings 6:30pm to 10:00pm and Sunday lunchtimes 12pm to 3pm.  We will monitor these sessions with a view to opening on further days in the coming weeks.   We will not be serving food at present but will let you know as soon as we are in a position to do so. As part of the new guidance we are implementing the following;

    • To make your visit to the pub as seamless as possible we ask that you  book before arriving, access to this can be found on the top menu. 
    • There will be a one way system in the pub please adhere to this even using the facilities
    • We have sanitising stations located at the entrance and exit of the pub
    • On arrival we will help you find your table, we ask that yourdrinks are ordered at your table, unfortunately there will beno sitting or standing at the bar
    • We will be collecting personal details of customers visiting us to aid track and tracePayment is to be made by card payment onlyWe ask that you respect the 1m+ social distance at your tables, moving around the premises and using the facilities
    • We ask that you limit the toilets to 2 people maximum at a time, sanitising on the way in and out of the toilets
    • The requirement that those sharing tables come from no more than 2 separate households (indoors and outdoors) or, for outdoors only, 6 people from any households should be adhered to
    • We welcome dogs but only at Garden tables

      Our capacity will be greatly reduced to enable us to adhere to the Government guidelines so please ensure you book your table to help manage demand for seats.  There may be some seats for walk-ins, but we hope to be busy and suggest you book to avoid disappointment. If you can’t get a table, you will be offered a take-away.

      Our garden has been extended into the car park to enable us to seat more people but we cannot guarantee the weather, so it might be useful to bring an umbrella!!!

      We would like to say a big thank you to our lovely volunteers who have offered to assist us in these difficult times.   If you would like to help please speak to a member of the Committee as we need all the help we can get.

      Stay safe and we look forward to welcoming you back on 31st July.
      The Management Committee

So what do you do when your local village pub closes? Drive to the next village I guess. But what do you do when that one closes too? And what replaces the local pub’s role in the informal village social network? Facebook? I hope not. Recent statistics suggest that 30 pubs are closing in the UK every week and most of them never re-open. Nineteen closed in Essex alone in 2014.

The Cross Inn, Great Bromley, a few miles outside Colchester, on the edge of neighbouring Ardleigh, closed its doors in May 2015. A few locals didn’t want the Cross to become yet another statistic and decided to do something about it. And that’s why this website is here.

In 2015 The Cross Inn, in Great Bromley, Essex closed and was put up for sale as a development opportunity.  A group of locals didn’t want to lose the Cross as their village pub so set up  “Save the Bromley Cross”.  And amazingly, 18 months later, the pub is open again under community ownership.

Over three years later we are a thriving community hub.  We have now rebranded and are called The Great Bromley Cross.   We are more than a pub, offering the community outreach Post Office and Library services, a coffee shop and a recycling facility. We also host other community activities like the local Friendship Club, a “come and play” music club, a craft club, the WI darts team and twice-yearly village litter picks.

Latest News – 27th June

Dear Customer/Shareholder/Volunteer

We do hope you are all well and missing us as much as we are missing you.  I can’t believe it has been over three months since our doors were open to customers. We wanted to let you know that discussions are underway for the re-opening of the Great Bromley Cross.  The Committee have been meeting regularly to review the situation which changes by the week.

We are taking advantage of the closure to carry out some improvements to the Pub which we had already scheduled. These include some improvements to the cellar and a new bar front and a few mod cons fitted into the bar area such as a glass washer and ice machine which will make our volunteers happy.  We have been keeping our costs to a minimum, to continue to maintain our strong financial position which has been supported by a small grant from the government.

We had so much planned for VE Day on 8th May but we are hoping to run this event as and when we are able.   Thank you to Linda and Steve for taking the trouble to put up the bunting.   Thank you also to our garden maintenance team who have attended to the plants while we have been shut.  

You may have seen that The Cheese and Pie Man comes along on Friday mornings.  This will continue for the foreseeable future so if you haven’t already tried one of their pies pop down between 9am and 2pm.  They also have a large selection of cheeses. 

The recent announcement that pubs can open from 4th July was good news, but there is a lot of rules and regulations that need to be adhered to.   We are working on a plan to implement these with a view to opening our doors on Friday 31st July.   In the interim, we are proposing to offer a Takeaway service from Friday 10th July.   Details will follow next week on opening times, ales available and procedures for ordering and collection.  The COVID opening regulations mean that our need for volunteers is greater than ever.

We hope to be in a position to tell you about how we will be opening and what will be required of you to come into the pub next week.

We look forward to seeing you all before too long and will be in contact soon with an update.


The Management Committee

Charity Casino Nite

What an excellent night it was, with everyone dressing to impress in their DJs and party frocks.

Once again Paul worked his charm and tickets were sold out for this event, so a big thank you to Paul who has now been promoted to “Chief Events Organiser”. 

We had three sponsors for the night Barry Taylor, Marcus Tinworth and Ray Baker who each sponsored a game table. The winning male and female with the most chips at the end of the night were Jan and Martin who both won £50 each and very kindly donated their winnings back to the Charity

The total amount made for our chosen charity “The British Heat Foundation” was £800.  The winning male and female with the most chips at the end of the night were Jan and Martin who both won £50 each and very kindly both donated their winnings back to the Charity.  When the fun stopped at 10pm, the drinking commenced and we were treated to some delicious canapés made by the delightful Linda.   I think there were a few sore heads the next day!!

Conker Championship 2019

Our annual Conker Championship took place on Sunday 13th October. We had a record number of entries and the pub was full of spectators too. A big thank you to Ray Baker who sponsored the event by buying the Trophies. The tournament was judged by Paul and assisted by Christine who kept everyone in order. Our 2019 winners are:

Paul Cudmore – Seniors
Zach Baker – Juniors

Free Birthday Drink

We have received a suggestion that maybe we should offer our customers a drink on their birthday.  I believe this has been adopted by a number of other pubs in the area.   We have tried to get our heads around how we could manage this and think the best way to do it is if you want to sign up for this offer, you will need to fill in a form telling us your birthday and signing the form to give us permission to enter the data in our database.  The “Birthday Forms” will be kept behind the bar.   So, next time you are in just ask the bar attendant for a form and you will be signed up for this promotion.  Just to clarify, your free drink will be just a drink for the “birthday person” and consist of a pint of beer, 175ml glass of wine/prosecco, a single shot of spirit or a soft drink.  You will be able to print your Birthday Voucher here once you have signed up for the promotion  This must be used within one week of your birthday.   We will be trialling this offer for the next three months and if it proves successful and not too troublesome will continue it longer.   You must be 18 years and over to partake in this offer.

Summer Ramble

15th August saw our first Summer Ramble which was very popular. A group of 20 ramblers left the pub on a 9 mile walk and the weather was kind to us. The route was set by Jenny and ventured first to Elmstead then around Allen’s reservoir, out to Crockleford, through Crockleford Wood and then on to the Wooden Fender (thank you Richard for opening especially for us Ramblers!) then back down Green Lane over the railway track past Bobby George’s house then through Jackie’s farm before walking home along Park Road and Ardleigh Road. Amanda did a brilliant job feeding everyone on their return..