Shropshire Star

Shropshire pub set to reopen after being rescued by community

A Shropshire pub which was forced to close last year is set to reopen in time for Christmas after being saved by a community group.

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The Horse & Jockey Pub

The Horse and Jockey in Northwood, near Ellesmere, shut after being hit by rising energy prices and cost-of-living challenges.

But, after it was put up for sale in October last year, the Friends of the Horse and Jockey was formed to look at ways of saving it and received overwhelming support for buying it.

Members of the public were asked to pledge money to own a stake in it, should it by bought and reopened and government money from the Community Ownership Fund was secured, with a £240,000 grant.

Now contracts have been exchanged and the Friends of the Horse and Jockey said on Social Media: "We are thrilled to announce that a significant milestone has been reached in our journey.

"The ink has dried, and contracts have been officially exchanged! The Horse & Jockey has officially transformed into a community pub!

"This moment signifies a giant step forward in our mission to create a vibrant and welcoming community space. We can't wait to open the doors and welcome you all to our community pub. Thank you for being part of this incredible journey. Let's raise a toast to the bright future ahead!"

Speaking on behalf of the group, Louise Paton told the Shropshire Star: "We have done it and we are all absolutely ecstatic!

"The solicitors have worked really hard and i want to say a big thank you to the vendors for sticking with it and getting the deal over the line.

"We have had so much support and local businesses have offered their services either free or heavily discounted which has been really kind and we can't thank them all enough.

"Battlefield Beers have been very supportive too and we are grateful to MP Helen Morgan for her support.

"We have seen a real sense of community spirit. It really has been heartening. We have a manager in place and we are hoping to open before Christmas and then, in the new year, we will aim to get the restaurant back up and running as soon as possible."