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Hundreds sign petition to save pub where Ed Sheeran played

PUBLISHED: 17:56 12 September 2017 | UPDATED: 08:27 13 September 2017

Villagers in Framsden are trying to save The Doberman Pub.  Left to right, Helen Morton, Claure Macaulay, Brian Cox, Jeannie and Glenn Buckingham. Picture: SARAHLUCY BROWN

Villagers in Framsden are trying to save The Doberman Pub. Left to right, Helen Morton, Claure Macaulay, Brian Cox, Jeannie and Glenn Buckingham. Picture: SARAHLUCY BROWN

Suffolk villagers are mounting a campaign to save their local pub – where Ed Sheeran is rumoured to have played one of his first gigs.

The Dobermann Inn, in Framsden, has become the centre of a row between its owner and a group of people in the village.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN The Dobermann Inn, in Framsden, has become the centre of a row between its owner and a group of people in the village. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Nearly 300 people are said to have signed a petition calling for the Dobermann Inn in Framsden to be retained as a “splendid example of a rural English pub”, with many offering their time, skills and money to help.

Glenn Buckingham, a member of the steering group leading the campaign, said there was strong support in the village to register the pub as a community asset.

“People are very concerned they will lose this,” he said. “Once it’s gone, it’s gone for good.”

The campaign started after the pub’s owner sought to convert the business into a residential property. Julia Coulthard had inherited it from her mother, Sue Frankland, the pub’s landlady of 30 years, who died in November.

The Doberman pub in Framsden.  Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN The Doberman pub in Framsden. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Mrs Coulthard says the pub had never been commercially successful and was not considered viable by any of the prospective buyers she had spoken with following her mother’s death. She claims to have incurred costs from the pub and needs the money she has been offered for it as a home.

However, the campaigners claim the pub has been an important part of village life, including events such as potato growing competitions, a sloe gin festival and Framsden Street Fayre. Village groups use it for meetings.

During a recent event organised by the steering group, residents were told of ways to secure the pub as a community asset,using funding from the Plunkett Foundation. Previous attempts to register the pub have failed, however the group believes it can succeed by providing evidence it has been used by the community for 300 years.

At the meeting, representatives from The Case is Altered, a community run pub in Bentley, gave a presentation about how they had managed to make a success of their plans.

The villagers in Framsden want their pub to become a community hub, opening for coffee and meetings during the day and making use of high speed broadband. They also hope it can provide work for young people.

The pub’s recent “claim to fame”, they said, was that Ed Sheeran played one of his earliest gigs there – and was asked by the landlady to turn the volume down.

The group is looking to extend its petition beyond the village. Email framsdencommunitypub@gmail.com for information.

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