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Fight to keep Greyhound running
FIVE friends who clubbed together to save their village pub are moving into the second phase of their plan to keep it running.
The group are hoping to get planning permission to build houses in the garden of the Greyhound, in Letcombe Regis, near Wantage, to raise money to offer bed and breakfast as well.
Planning consultant Terry Gashe, from Wantage, one of the five consortium members, said: “We want to see if we can keep the pub going “ But in doing that we don’t think it is unreasonable to make a little profit.”
The group is hoping that each of the four new homes behind the pub will make £250,000, leaving them that amount to spend on the revamp to a seven-bedroom B&B, extending the kitchen and completely refurbishing it.
So far villagers seem happy someone has come to the Greyhound’s rescue – when they bought the pub in May 2012 it had been closed for four months.
Mr Gashe did not want to say how much the group paid for the pub.
Parish councillor David Barber, who has lived in the village for 20 years, said: “I see the need for it.
“I think there is some concern over the viability of the plan, but I think that is more an issue as to whether it is commercially viable.
“Without it we are going to lose the pub probably, so it is the lesser of two evils.”
The last pub in the village, the Sparrow, closed about 15 years ago.
The consortium is made up of Mr Gashe and his wife Rosemary, and Phil and Anne Hodgson, who live next door to the pub. The fifth partner is friend Nigel Porter, who lives outside Oxfordshire.
They submitted a planning application of their scheme for four semi-detatched properties to the Vale of White Horse District Council in September.
“So far, only one Letcombe resident has objected to the application.
The public can comment until October 23 and the council is due to decide on the scheme on November 13.
Mr Gashe said: “If we don’t get permission we can’t invest in the pub.”
He also paid tribute to the work of landlord and lady Paul and Brenda Wilson, who have been running the pub for the past six months.
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