HAVING long connections with Sandford and the Rose and Crown, the pub was the logical place for everyone to go to after Arthur Newton’s funeral service at Crediton Parish Church last month. 

Arthur died in July in the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital, aged 83.  One of eight children, he had been born in Wales, the family later moving to Whitestone near Exeter where Arthur grew up.

He trained as a Carpenter and Joiner and worked for Devon Contractors in Exeter.   In 1972 he and Jan opened APN Stores at the bottom of Four Mills Lane, Crediton. 

They worked tirelessly to get it going with Art driving to London many nights of the week to collect stock.

It became a huge success and they managed to buy their dream house, Summerhayes in Sandford in 1974.

Art played darts at the Rose and Crown in Sandford.

However, because of a large fire at APN stores in 1981 everything was lost overnight.  Discovering they had been under-insured was heartbreaking, but Art tried to continue on a smaller scale in a nearby outbuilding – never giving up.  

Art realised that they needed to do something else, so built show jumps and again he gained a good reputation for his work.  

That was when he also built and hand-carved the bar in the Rose and Crown for the then landlord, Ron Lowe.

In 1983, Jan and Art bought The Angel at Witheridge.

He would work after closing time all through the night taking down walls etc, clean up and be ready to open again the following day and within six months the pub was finished.  

Many good friends were made and he would spend hours polishing the wood floor of the large function room as everything always had to be spick and span.

From there they bought Trenovissick at Bow, turning it into a very successful residential home, later also providing day care facilities.

In 1991, whilst living at Bow, their daughter Jill gave birth to their grandson, Jack. Art and his grandson were extremely close and Jack always referred to him as his “best mate”. 

Wanting to diversify the business, Arthur and Jan set up Trenovissick Domiciliary Care Agency, which eventually led them to move to Barnstaple Cross, employing more than 100 staff and covering most of Mid Devon.  

Winter and snow saw Arthur out at all hours and, late at night, driving carers to visit their clients.

In 2015 the business was sold with the aim for Jan and Art to eventually retire after working side-by-side for many, many years.

They both regularly frequented the Rose and Crown at Sandford, Arthur had always loved the pub and was delighted when their daughter Jill and her husband Andy bought it in 2009.

Arthur oversaw all the building work and even saw the bar he had built many years ago have a new lease of life after a makeover during lockdown.

Donations at his funeral service were for the British Heart Foundation and may be made via A White and Sons, Albert Road, Crediton, EX17 2BZ.