It’s such a shame to hear of statistics released by the campaign for real ale (CAMRA) who recently announced that around 20 pubs a week close their doors for good.
It’s been a constant battle for many with high-cost rent on their premises, high business rates and ultra-competitive price wars with supermarkets offering beers and wines at discount prices which instigated the ‘stay at home’ drinkers.
It’s a shame that many of our local pubs are often missed once they are gone with many locals recognising too late that the local pub is one of the main linchpins of the community.
So when we heard about a small pub at the center of such a community being saved by the local villagers we were keen to find out more.
The George and Dragon in Hudswell, North Yorkshire, rang the bell for last orders in 2008 but, by raising £220,000, the locals were able to buy the pub back and perform extensive renovations. It has now been brought fully back to life by its community adding a shop and library in the process.
There are currently around 200 villagers who are shareholders in the pub. The pub has certainly diversified too adding a library, shop (apparently the smallest shop in Yorkshire) and even an allotment to the offering. With the new business rate tariffs arriving the pub should be in a better financial position again going forward.
The pub has now been finally awarded a CAMRA Award who applauded their efforts in providing a “welcoming atmosphere” and “strong community” ethos.
CAMRA also praised its range of real ales and cider on offer at the pub.
“We are truly thrilled to have been recognised by CAMRA with this award. We’re a small Yorkshire Dales pub, owned by the community and run by me and my family, I’m extremely proud of what our little pub has achieved.” Stu Miller, Landlord