The Trust continues to explore options for the Rose & Crown that will benefit Slaley in the long term. Since our update and request for feedback in the September newsletter, a lot of people have voiced their support for the R&C being independent and community supported, rather than being sold onto another brewery or built up privately and then sold on at a price that means it is not viable in the long term.
To update progress and to outline different potential ownership options, a public meeting will be held in the Commemoration Hall on Sunday 16th December between 4.30pm and 6pm.
Please do come along, it will be a good opportunity to find out in a bit more detail what has been happening, to ask questions about how a community pub might be owned and run, and to share your views and any concerns. If you cannot make it and you have any questions or suggestions then please call Norman Watson on 01434 673914.
In the meantime, whilst we await Marston’s response to a recent offer*, we have, with pro-bono input from many supporters, been building the foundations that will help to make the Rose & Crown a viable business for a landlord to run in conjunction with the community for the long term.
[* As the offer is based on private accounts extrapolated by business valuers Sanderson Weatherall we have maintained its confidentiality. ]
Since our update in September and to support development of a robust business case for investors;
- Trust members have visited community-owned pubs in Cumbria and Yorkshire to understand more fully what is involved in setting up and running a community-owned pub.
- We have had a dilapidations survey carried out and renovations plans drafted and costed.
- We have had a business valuation carried out by professional valuers.
- We have applied for grant funding to help with professional fees – legal, tax, accounting, etc. This means that should the opportunity arise to purchase the pub, we will have funds available to pay for advice on the most appropriate business ownership options and what the business case (to incorporate an agreed purchase price) might look like.
- With the support of the Parish Council, we have applied to have the R&C registered as an Asset of Community Value. This means that if anyone bids to purchase the pub, the village has six months to make a bid after assessing if a similar bid would be viable, agreeing what the business ownership structure might look like and where the funds might be raised. Additionally if the R&C is registered as a community asset it will then be possible to protect its use so that it cannot be changed subsequently (to residential for example).
At this stage, we really need everyone’s input in understanding if you might want to visit the Rose & Crown in the future, the facilities you would like it to have and how you might support its purchase. Therefore it would be really helpful if you could complete this brief ONLINE SURVEY, or the form distributed with the December Newsletter, by 31st December if possible. All responses will be treated in the strictest confidence.
Going forward, if and when we get to a stage where Marston’s accept a sensible offer, a Steering Group will be set up and run independently of the Community Trust. This body will be responsible for managing the pub purchase – (including incorporating an agreed legal entity to own and run the pub, managing fund-raising, refurbishment, recruitment etc.).
Finally if you have not already done so and would like to be added to the list of R&C supporters please e-mail your contact details to firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a message on 01434 676900.