A PUB landlord has expressed an emotional goodbye to his staff and loyal customers.

Ed Johnson, who has left The King's Arms in Hawkshead, had special thanks for his team, who have experienced 'the most challenging' 20 months he's ever seen.

The business was one of many which had to issue a plea to customers to be kind to staff earlier this year.

It came amid a wave of reports of mistreatment of hospitality staff due to Covid regulations, mixed with a shortage of workers rejoining the industry.

The popular pub boss handed the reins over on November 15 and says that messages have been flooding in wishing him well.

Mr Johnson said: "I didn’t want to go into Oscar-winner-speech-mode, but this has been quite emotional.

"It’s been one heck of a ride and without going on too much, I want to say a couple of things.

"To my wonderful, loyal team who have supported me and worked their butts off for me over the years - particularly the last 20 months or so, which have been the most challenging any of us can ever remember.

"Gill, Jo, Karen, Lucy, Nessy, Tom, Roy, Denny, Susan, Jayne, ‘Little Ed’, Ron, Patsy and of course Vanessa, Amelie, Sophie & Rosie.

"Thank you, thank you, thank you. We got through this together and I’m so very grateful. I love you all."

He has had well-wishes both nationally and internationally, as tourists and locals alike frequented his bar.

One woman from Milwaukee, USA, wished him well.

"To my many truly valued and treasured regulars, be you from near or far.

"As the news of my departure spread over recent weeks I have received so many messages of goodwill it really has been amazing, incredibly touching, and quite humbling.

"You have become such firm and loyal friends over the years please accept my sincere thanks, you are truly part of The Kings Arms Family.

"You know who you are and I look forward to seeing you again very soon."

"Thank you everyone."