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Villagers in Helions Bumpstead continue to strive to buy and reopen their only pub

Villagers outside the Three Horseshoes in Helions Bumpstead. (2379757)
Villagers outside the Three Horseshoes in Helions Bumpstead. (2379757)

Hopes that a closed village pub near Haverhill could be re-opened and owned and run by the community have risen.

The Three Horseshoes in Helions Bumpstead has been closed since June 2014, when owners Jack and Ann Jennings decided it was no longer financially viable.

A community share offer was launched last year by the specially-formed Helions Bumpstead Community Benefit Society to finance the purchase of the pub.

The society's chairman, Richard Russell, said that a sale price has been agreed with Mr and Mrs Jennings and that there is widespread support for the purchase in and around the village.

A detailed business plan has been produced by the society. Along with the share prospectus, it can be viewed at: helionscommunitypub.co.uk

The community purchase will be supported by the lottery-funded More Than A Pub programme through the Plunkett Foundation.

Joint loan/grant funding of £100,000 has been agreed in principle and the pledge survey indicates that up to £310,000 will be raised from the share offer.

Mr Russell said: "We have established a good working relationship with the owners over the last year and reached agreement in principle to bring the Three Horseshoes into community ownership.

"If successful, our bid to purchase will secure the pub for the village for the future and guarantee its survival.

"Over time, we will develop the business to include other facilities, including a village shop and a microbrewery. Most importantly, the Three Horseshoes will sit at the heart of the village community, alongside the parish Church of St Andrew and the village hall. There are now more than 50 pubs in community ownership nationally.

"We hope to add the Three Horseshoes to the list very soon."

The society is looking to raise £400,000, of which £310,000 is the asking price to buy the pub with the remaining money to be used for refurbishment.


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