Save the pub campaign steps up in Essex village
PUBLISHED: 12:31 22 January 2010 | UPDATED: 22:07 31 May 2010
A FIGHT to save the last-remaining pub in a village has stepped up a gear with the launch of a regular newsletter. The Plough Inn at Radwinter has been closed since August when the pub s licence was surrendered to Uttlesford District Council (UDC) amid fe
A FIGHT to save the last-remaining pub in a village has stepped up a gear with the launch of a regular newsletter.
The Plough Inn at Radwinter has been closed since August when the pub's licence was surrendered to Uttlesford District Council (UDC) amid fears that the building would be turned into housing.
The Plough Start-Up Committee, which was formed by residents to try and buy the pub, has now published their first newsletter Plough On! to rally support.
"We have 83 keen supporters so far," said committee member Dave Smith. "And our newsletter is an excellent way of keeping them all in touch with the latest developments.
"Our first job is to make sure that everybody knows exactly what to do to challenge any planning application the current owners may make to change the use of the property from a licensed premises to something else, like residential use."
While the fight to re-open The Plough is ongoing, the committee has come up with a unique way keen to keep the idea of a community pub in Radwinter alive.
Founder of the Plough Start-Up Committee, Dixie Walker, said: "Once a month we are opening Radwinter Village Hall as a licensed 'pub' for Sunday lunchtime drinks, nibbles, and a few traditional pub games under the tongue-in-cheek name of Plough 2.
"The first of these temporary substitute Ploughs will be on Sunday January 24 from noon and everybody is welcome."
He added: "We're exploring several options to raise funds to buy and run The Plough, including setting up a charitable organisation and pursuing grant funding."
Mr Smith said: "We would certainly wish to reopen The Plough with additional community services such as a shop, along the lines of many pubs on the 'Pub is the Hub' scheme to retain and enhance services in rural areas.
"But The Plough, like many village pubs, has a cultural as well as a practical community value - the village pub is able to offer certain things that are becoming rare in a society shaped by global commercial pressures.
"It's those subtle but important factors that make a good pub such an important part of the fabric of a rural community, and that's why we're fighting to get ours back.