On the Bright Side
Together shares and loans mean we have raised upwards of £265,000 and loads of people are still generously chipping in. They
- give brilliant support to our fundraising events
- have been buying more shares
- have been offering loans
- are helping out (there’s still a lot to be done: work has definitely not stopped).
Whatever your contribution, a great big thank you – everything really helps!
Buying the Pub, Adapting the Plans
The priority is to get enough money to buy the pub and open the doors. Loans and selling a few more shares will help us to do this. But there won’t be lot of spare cash swilling around once that’s happened. This means that paid staff, 7 day a week opening and full menus may have to wait.
We can start off with voluntary staff, opening at the most popular times and offering simple food at limited times. That way we can build up a cash flow and once we’re making enough profit, can look to employ people. We’ve seen first-hand how other community-owned pubs have done it. Many have opened up with volunteers and a reduced (and in some cases total lack of) food offer. They have gone on to flourish, run by paid staff or a combination of paid staff and volunteers - and providing great menus. We will get there!
Would you like to help? We will be welcoming anyone with relevant experience or just simple enthusiasm to help run the pub. Do get in touch
Pub For Sale
Roger and Hazel are keen to sell, and have put the Duke on the market again. By way of re-assurance, the property has not been de-licensed and can’t be sold off as a house. It has been listed as an Asset of Community Value (AVC), which means the Community will have until October 26th to make an offer and until then, Roger and Hazel cannot accept an offer from someone else.
Our Bash in the Barn in March seemed to go down a treat with the 180 people who came along – and it raised an impressive £3,300 for the Save the Duke campaign.
Thanks to the Castons for providing their barn at Church Farm and setting it up so splendidly. Thanks to Lucy for taking control and doing such a splendid job; to all those who helped her with the organisation and running of the event; and to the many people who brought along scrumptious desserts!
Huge thanks also to:
- The Community Shop and Somersham Garage for selling so many tickets
- Greene King and The All Day Brewing Co for generously donating beer
- Bardwell Mill Bakery for providing a huge tray of chocolate brownies
- Shoot the Drummer for the great music
- Councillor David Card and his wife Eileen for helping serve the food.
- Everyone who donated a prize or auction item.
We were honoured to have some signed Coldplay goodies donated by Rupert Berryman, father of Coldplay bassist Guy Berryman. Many thanks indeed to Rupert - a kind and dedicated Save the Duke supporter who drove all the way from Kent to attend the bash!
Our next event is on September 3rd back at Church Farm - see here.
Feedback on communication: please get in touch if there’s anything you’d like to discuss!
Some people are concerned about the length of time it is taking to buy the pub. Some have said they would like more regular updates. We agree. We would have liked the whole process to be faster. We wanted to be in there by now. And we would love to have more news to tell more frequently.
There is still a great deal of work going on in the background, and whenever something significant happens as a result we do let you know! If you have any concerns or specific questions, please just get in touch - leave a message at Church Farm 01473 831352 and someone will call you back.
If you know of anyone who is not receiving the information we do send out, please ask them to contact us.
Chipping in a bit more…
If you could afford to buy a few more shares, or simply donate a sum – whatever it is - to the cause, please visit our website. You can do it all on our investment pages. Or contact our treasurer Gerard if you’d rather send a cheque or use a BACS payment firstname.lastname@example.org 01473 657178.