The decline of the local pub has, for some time, been a topical issue. However, is there a change in the market? Last year Fleurets reported that, across Gloucestershire & Oxfordshire, the majority of pubs sold continued to be used as pubs. These have been in the price range of £200,000 – £450,000; and also range from pubs in need of complete refurbishment, to sites already furnished to a high standard.
The former Quart Pot in Milton-under-Wychwood, was completely empty and the freehold sold for circa £200,000. It was purchased by experienced operators who refurbished the property, which now trades as The Hare.
The Inn at Greatworth, was purchased by a party returning to the licensed trade and the North Arms at Wroxton, was purchased by the local college for community use and college training purposes. The Carpenters Arms in Sherston was purchased by a private investor and then let to a local operator who refurbished and significantly improved trade. The Red Lion in Bloxham required complete refurbishment and whilst the ACV status put off developers, the pub was purchased by existing village operators and refurbished to a high standard, whilst The Bell Inn, Shenington, attracted a chef from Scotland to return to the local area.
In addition, Fleurets have seen a number of village pubs purchased for interesting uses, which will still benefit the villages, including training centres and large holiday letting units.
Chris Irving, Divisional Director from Fleurets, commented: “I have been involved in marketing pubs for over 25 years and it is very pleasing to see the return of confidence for purchasers looking for character village pubs which often offer not only great trading prospects, but a pleasant environment to live. A number of parties needed to raise funding for a percentage of the purchase price or to undertake full refurbishment programmes. It is great to see these investments, which not only make the pub a continued success but also keep villages vibrant.”