Wetherspoons owner Tim Martin made a visit to the chain's Colchester venue - and posed for a selfie with a pair superfans.

Phil, 74, and Julie Fox, 71, bumped into their idol at The Playhouse in St John's Street. 

The couple, from West Yorkshire, have travelled all over Britain to sample a pint at every Wetherspoons in the UK, and have now visited more than 300.

The pair were in Colchester on a "nostalgic trip" to where Julie grew up, and went to the pub for their tea, 

While there they mentioned to two members of staff what their mission was.

Later on as the pair were heading towards the bus stop, the staff members came running up the street looking for them, explaining how the Wetherspoons boss was in the pub.

When asked how it felt meeting his hero, grandfather-of-five Phil said: “It was lovely, he’s very customer-orientated. He was very nice.

“I was even a bit starstruck, I didn’t know what to say to him.

“I’ve got two ambitions, one is to appear in the Wetherspoons magazine and another is to meet Tim - we’ve fulfilled them now.”

Gazette: Phil and Julie Fox are visiting pubs across the country. Picture: SWNSPhil and Julie Fox are visiting pubs across the country. Picture: SWNS

The owner even bought the couple, who have been married for 40 years, a round of drinks - a pint of Coors for Julie and a pint of bitter for Phil.

Former newspaper production manager Phil said: “When I ordered the drinks, he told me ‘I’m paying for that’ to which I said no, as I’m not a freeloader or anything.

“But he insisted.”

The pair believe that Tim visits branches to see how they are performing.

Tim also mentioned to the pair that his favourite branch of the business is The Imperial in Exeter, one which the pair previously visited and described as "lovely and unusual for a public house". 

The pub and bar in Colchester was previously The Playhouse Theatre.

It originally opened in 1929, the theatre became the A.B.C. in the 1960s, and it was redeveloped into a pub in 1994.