A POPULAR pub which dates back to the 15th century and plays an important role in the history of the Mayflower ship, will be revamped after receiving a “remarkably well-timed” grant.

The Alma Inn, in Kings Head Street, Harwich, will receive a grant of almost £1,950 after successfully applying for funds from Tendring Council’s Harwich and Dovercourt Bay Business Grant Scheme.

The money will serve to renew and refresh the exterior of the Grade-II and II* listed building in line with the rules on work on listed properties.

The pub is a historic gem and plays a role in the story of Historic Harwich, including the town’s link to the Mayflower ship which in 1620 carried the pilgrims to America.

Christopher Jones, the ship’s master, lived in the building across the street from the Alma Inn and the pub was the home to Jones’ first wife Sara Twitt.

Nick May, owner and landlord of The Alma Inn, said the scheme was well-worth applying to.

“This remarkably well-timed and easy to apply for grant will enable the Alma Inn and Dining rooms to look as good on the outside as all our customers know she is on the inside,” Mr May said.

“It will also enable the soon-to-open Lambard’s Salt House to dazzle all that pass before and through it.

“I would encourage all eligible Harwich and Dovercourt businesses to take advantage of this part-paid for spruce up of their property.”

The grant scheme is supporting independent businesses within the Harwich and Dovercourt town centre areas with a whole range of refurbishment and improvement projects, offering match-funding of between £100 and £2,000.

A total funding pot of £20,000 is available, and the money is primarily being targeted in both towns to help mark the 400th anniversary of the sailing of The Mayflower.

Mary Newton, council’s cabinet member for business and economic growth, said the pub’s application should be a beacon to other businesses.

She said: “This grant scheme is really gathering pace now, with early grants going to a modern hair salon and a historic pub inside a building where parts date back to the 15th Century and the funding can help them both.

“So, whether your Harwich or Dovercourt independent business is steeped in history, or the new kid on the block, if it needs some improvement then why not consider applying for a grant.

“I would urge businesses to apply as soon as possible and grab this opportunity with two hands.”

For more information about the grants scheme visit bit.ly/3dKewGX.