We are delighted to share in the news that the Plunkett Foundation ‘More Than A Pub’ programme, supporting communities across England to save their local pub, is back – with a £2.2million funding pot.
Launching today at The Dog Inn in Belthorn, Lancashire, the programme will run for 18 months, until December 2020. As a previous and continuing loan provider to the programme, we are looking forward to hearing from, and meeting, the next round of community groups who want to save their pub.
Community pubs are so much more than a pub. Owned by members, they are run democratically, on the basis of one-member-one-vote. They operate in and with communities and are driven by the community needs – many incorporate craft and social groups, post office counters, food takeaway services and even library provision. They tackle loneliness and create community cohesion. Often the last hub in a local area, they provide a place for a community heart to beat.
Member control and input ensures that community pubs continually flex and respond to the needs of members and the wider community. Being of, and for, the community means decisions can be made quickly in response to changing local need – there’s no remote landlord, detached from the on the ground reality. And this leads to commercial success – community pubs have a 100% success rate, bucking the national trend which has seen around a quarter of privately-owned pubs shut down since 2008
If you are part of a group considering taking ownership of your pub, find out more from some of those who have – we’re proud to have been part of the story for for many community pub groups including the Three Horseshoes at Hellions Bumpstead, the Bluebell at Cocking, the Three Tuns at Guilden Morden and the Crown Inn at South Moreton. And, if you decide to make your pub More Than A Pub, we look forward to helping you on the way. Here’s to opening night!