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Campaigners bid to preserve pub in Oxenhope
7:30am Friday 23rd August 2013 in News
Worth Valley politicians have launched a campaign to save the Bay Horse Inn at Oxenhope.
They want to ensure the historic building at Upper Town, still open for business but currently on the market for £295,000, remains a pub.
Glen Miller, Rebecca Poulsen and Russell Brown believe villagers should be given the opportunity to run it.
The trio, who represent Worth Valley ward on Bradford Council, want the Bay Horse to be classified as a ‘community asset’.
This would give Oxenhope residents time to either raise money to buy the Bay Horse or draw up plans to keep the pub within the community.
The Bay Horse is being advertised as a pub/restaurant, but the councillors are concerned there is no guarantee the building will not be converted to another use.
Coun Miller said: “The Bay Horse is a proper community pub, and in recent years we have seen too many village pubs closing down.
“Quite often communities have been sad to see their local, which is often an important part of community life, closed and turned into something different.
“There has often been a sense of inability to do anything, and once the pub is gone it is gone.”
But Karen Ward, tenant of the Bay Horse Inn, said she could not understand why the three councillors were getting involved.
She added: “If local people supported the pub, then it wouldn’t be up for sale. “Ninety per cent of locals don’t support the pub. I don’t make enough money and I work there full-time.”
Councillors will contact local government minister, Brendan Lewis, who has set out to protect such pubs by allowing them to be designated as ‘assets of community value’.
The trio will also seek advice from the Campaign for Real Ale, which aims to see 300 community pubs placed on the list.
Coun Miller added: “Other communities have shown that with the new power, if the community wants to keep its pub enough, they are now in a position to do so.”
Chartered surveyors Westlake and Co are advertising the Bay Horse Inn as a ‘traditional/characterful premises’, offering bar and dining accommodation.
The building has three bedrooms, car parking, and areas to the front and back for customers to sit outside.
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