Former landlord thanks the community for the revelry, friendship and traditions

Colin Smith (pictured) is the former landlord of the legendary pub, the Locks in Geldeston. Picture:

Colin Smith (pictured) is the former landlord of the legendary pub, the Locks in Geldeston. Picture: Archant - Credit: Archant

The former landlord of a legendary pub has described running the venue, as he poured his last beer and thanked the community who made it great.

When he took over the Locks in 2005, he said: "The place was flooded, we barely made it down the lan

When he took over the Locks in 2005, he said: "The place was flooded, we barely made it down the lane". Picture: Contributed by Colin Smith - Credit: Archant

Colin Smith, who now lives in Beccles, took over the Locks in 2005 after running a number of pubs across Norfolk and Suffolk.

"The place was flooded, we barely made it down the lane, then it snowed and we got cut off for a week," Mr Smith said.

Now aged 55, the businessman has moved on from the landmark pub, but credits his close friendships, stories of revelry and strong sense of community to the success of the venue.

The Locks Inn is nestled on the marshes of the river valley - it is remote from all main services and began its life as a mill-keeper's cottage.

Mr Smith said his favourite celebration was Beltane, as it coincided with his birthday. Picture: Con

Mr Smith said his favourite celebration was Beltane, as it coincided with his birthday. Picture: Contributed by Colin Smith - Credit: Archant


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While under his ownership, Mr Smith introduced traditions such as May Day, Beltane as well as the summer and winter solstice festival.

According to Mr Smith, it was also a chance for local musicians to "cut their teeth" and for sub-genres of music to make waves through the village.

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"It is still a community pub. If I had to describe it, I would say it's a neo-pagan tribal gathering point," Mr Smith said.

During his time as landlord, he witnessed couples meet, get married, and bring their children to the pub.

Beccles, Geldeston Locks. Photo: Courtesy of Peter Waller

Beccles, Geldeston Locks. Photo: Courtesy of Peter Waller - Credit: Courtesy of Peter Waller

He said: "It is a real joy to see that, it was almost a shame to not see another generation pass through.

"There is no reason why I left the pub, I had just finished my time there.

"I gave a lot of myself to that pub, and it was worth it, but I miss the energy of the Locks, I miss the swearing, I miss the stress.

He said there was too many individuals, bands and organisations to thank for his years as landlord.

Flooding at Geldeston Locks Inn4th January 2003

Flooding at Geldeston Locks Inn4th January 2003

"To name a few Suzanne Arnold, Graham Elliot, Murphy's Lore, Chris Spacehopper, and everyone daft enough to work for me.

"There is a spirituality to the Locks - you don't own the Locks, it is part of the culture - you are just passing through its history," he said.

Geldeston Locks from the River Waveney.

Geldeston Locks from the River Waveney. - Credit: Archant

Waveney Valley Conkers Tournament at the Geldeston Locks Inn.Picture: James Bass

Waveney Valley Conkers Tournament at the Geldeston Locks Inn.Picture: James Bass - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2015

The Geldeston Locks pub.

The Geldeston Locks pub. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press, Archant}

This charming photo of a quintet of happy ramblers was captured by our camera in 1958, just outside

This charming photo of a quintet of happy ramblers was captured by our camera in 1958, just outside the Geldeston Locks pub near Beccles. - Credit: Archant

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