Villagers unite to save historic pub

A COMMUNITY has clubbed together for an innovative project to save their historic village pub following the departure of its sixth landlord in just five years.

Craig Robinson

A COMMUNITY has clubbed together for an innovative project to save their historic village pub following the departure of its sixth landlord in just five years.

The Turks Head in Hasketon, near Woodbridge, is now under new management after nine locals decided to join forces and take up the tenancy.

The group - who were all regular drinkers in the pub - have no experience in the licensed trade but are looking forward to the challenge ahead.

They are now hoping the rest of the community will follow their lead and help return the 15th century building to its former glory.

Brent Evans, spokesman for the group, said: “It's an issue that we've all discussed as a group many times over a few beers. But this time, instead of just talking about it, we thought we'd take the plunge.

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“There are nine of us in total. I think it's fairly unusual - certainly we've been told that a community has never come together like this before.

“We're an interesting mix of characters. However, we all have one passion - we want to bring some stability to the business and to create a pub that the village will be proud of.”

As none of the group has experience of the pub trade they have decided to keep on the bar manager and chef who have been on hand to offer advice.

“The rest of us have been helping in our own areas of expertise,” Mr Evans continued. “For example one of the guys is a painter and decorator and another is an electrician so they've both been doing what they can.

“It's quite a steep learning curve. It's not going to be easy but the community spirit and enthusiasm for the project from those involved has been very encouraging.

“We don't want to keep hearing stories of how it was a great place to be 10 years ago - we want it to be a great place now, somewhere that is at the heart of the community and a focal point for village life.

“We've already managed to organise a couple of events which have been successful. There are several little projects going on. We want to refurbish the restaurant area and we have a huge garden so we are trying to make the most of that during the summer.”

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