Popular pub bought for £405,000 ahead of auction

The Locks pub in Geldeston, and East Suffolk Councillor Graham Elliott, who is leading a community b

The Locks pub in Geldeston, and East Suffolk Councillor Graham Elliott, who is leading a community bid to buy the pub at auction. Picture: Victoria Pertusa/Brittany Woodman - Credit: Archant

A community group bidding for a much-loved pub has bought the site ahead of auction.

The Locks Inn in Geldeston.

The Locks Inn in Geldeston. - Credit: Victoria Pertusa

The Locks Inn, in Geldeston, was listed for an online auction with Auction House East Anglia on Wednesday, October 21.

Once news of the pub’s availability was announced, a community group, led by East Suffolk councillor Graham Elliott, quickly united to launch a bid to “save the best pub in the world.”

The pub, on the Norfolk-Suffolk border, was sold for £405,000 prior to going under the hammer with a guide price of £395,000.

Mr Elliott said: “We didn’t know what today as going to deliver but we got it late on Tuesday night and paid the deposit at 9am on Wednesday morning.

Graham Elliott. Picture: Archant library.

Graham Elliott. Picture: Archant library. - Credit: Nick Butcher

“It is a done deal. We have exchanged contracts, paid the deposit and it was taken off the auction list, which is brilliant.

“It is a huge relief for us to get it and the response from the wider community has been overwhelming.

“It is fantastic news for the pub and for the whole of the Waveney Valley community.

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“Now we can really deliver on our promise to make this the best pub in the world.”

READ MORE: Pub owner bids fond farewell after 16 years

Ahead of the auction, the group set up a limited company to buy the pub, with the intention of converting this into a Community Benefit Society (CBS) immediately after the purchase.

Mr Elliott said: “There is a lot to do to get that money quicker than expected but we have been working flat out today.

“We have now got to realise all of the pledges of investment that we have had and turn them into proper money, with 14 days to complete the sale.

“We have had more offers coming in today too.

“I don’t think people realised we could get this but we have done it and now it is real people are jumping on board.

“We are working on the community share issue which will be a few weeks away, but that will give genuine, real ownership to investors who come from across a very wide area.”

The pub has been closed since Grain Brewery left the site in September.

Concerns for the future of the pub had been raised after the listing for the pub stated the site has “potential for other uses.”

Auctioneer Bryan Baxter said at the auction: “We were delighted to have this in our auction and there was lots of toing and froing for that property over the last few weeks but in the end the vendor and the purchaser have come to an agreement.

“Hopefully we will all be looking forward to going back to Geldeston Locks in the future to enjoy the position and location of that wonderful establishment.”

Anyone looking to invest, or to find out more, email invest@savethelocks.com, visit Community Bid for the Locks Inn on Facebook, or call Mr Elliott on 01502 714 661.