Save the Windmill pub business plan unveiled ahead of Hitchin meeting

PUBLISHED: 14:02 15 June 2019

An artist impression of what a resoted Windmill pub could look like. Picture: Save the Windmill

An artist impression of what a resoted Windmill pub could look like. Picture: Save the Windmill

Archant

The Save the Windmill campaign group has launched its business plan to help return the pub to its former glory, ahead of a public meeting in Hitchin.

The pub, located just outside Hitchin in the village of Charlton, closed in June 2015 after successive tenants struggled to make a go of the business.

Brewery group Charles Wells subsequently sold the building, but it remains unused as its current owner is reluctant to sell.

The campaign group, under the name The Windmill Community Pub Ltd, has now released its business plan to try to buy the building.

It reads: "The Windmill pub and car park are the only community facilities within Charlton. This business plan shows that The Windmill could be a viable, thriving community facility that will put the heart back into the village, and serve the diverse community of Charlton and Hitchin.

"We aim to raise £450,000 from the sale of shares, and other sources, to purchase and renovate the building for a new tenant. Shares will be available to the community, and shareholders will become members of the WCPL.

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"Initially a share offer will invite individuals to register an interest in buying shares, so that the WCPL has the financial backing to negotiate purchasing the pub and car park.

"A successful purchase cannot be guaranteed at this stage, but the WCPL can only be ready and able to negotiate the purchase of the pub with a successful share issue.

"If and when a purchase is successful, and the pub is restored, the rental income from the tenant will provide a revenue to maintain the building, service any loans and may facilitate the withdrawal of shares from time to time, and may pay interest to the investors."

The campaign group went to visit The Three Tuns in Guilden Morden to find out how it recently reopened after a share scheme.

People can learn more about the Windmill share scheme at a public meeting in Hitchin's Sun Hotel from 7.30pm on Monday, June 24.

"There are now over 100 successful community owned pubs up and down the country," said member Phil Jarvis.

"Under this model of ownership their success lies in the fact that they are run by the community, for the community."

To read the Windmill business plan in full, visit savethewindmillpub.com/share-offer.html.

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