VILLAGERS are considering buying their own pub. A packed public meeting at Bishopsteignton heard that one of the two inns – the Ring of Bells – had been closed for months without a buyer in sight, and that the Bishop John de Grandisson was now also up for sale.
A group of locals had looked at the pros and cons of acquiring one of the hostelries and operating it as a community pub.
The success of similar ventures in other villages was quoted.
A statement after the meeting declared: ‘Community pubs have flourished in many parts of the country over the last few years as the traditional country pub, and some urban ones, have struggled increasingly to remain viable.
‘They take many forms, but the key element is that their underlying principle is to serve the needs of the local community, often extending what they do beyond the remit of a standard village pub, eg extended hours with, say coffee shop, a place for community activities and meetings, partnerships with other facilities such as the community centre or local shop etc.’
The apparent success of the Tally Ho community pub in Littlehempston, which is a 10th the size of Bishopsteignton, was quoted.
The meeting overwhelmingly voted to explore the proposal in more detail and set up an action group to report back.