Chance to own part of 'best pub in Britain'

Members of the community group outside the Locks Inn, in Geldeston.

Members of the community group outside the Locks Inn, in Geldeston. - Credit: Graham Elliott

A "once in a generation opportunity" to own a share of a historic and much-loved pub is here.

After the Locks Inn, in Geldeston, was bought for £405,000 at the 11th hour ahead of an auction in October, the community group behind the bid is now preparing to launch a community share issue this week, offering everyone the chance to own a piece of the pub.

The group aims to "secure the irreplaceable 300-year-old heritage of the iconic pub, reinforce the pub's role as a buzzing cultural hub for Norfolk and Suffolk alike, reinvigorate the pub as a thriving venue for musicians and music lovers, serve the best quality local food and drink, and create the greenest, fairest, best pub in Britain".

The Locks Inn in Geldeston.

The Locks Inn in Geldeston. - Credit: Victoria Pertusa

They also hope to welcome "story-tellers practicing their art by candlelight", as well as hosting theatre productions and art exhibitions.

By launching the community share scheme, the group hopes to draw in over 500 shareholders, with shares from £50 to £50,000 available. 

Graham Elliott, East Suffolk Councillor and leader of the community group, said: "We are launching our community share issue on January 15. This will be a time to invest with your heart to help secure a treasured community asset, and a time to invest with your head with tax relief on investments worth 30pc over three years for UK income tax payers.

Dwile Flonking between Beccles and Bungay at The Geldeston Locks.

Dwile Flonking between Beccles and Bungay at The Locks. - Credit: Nick Butcher


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"This is the most critical stage of the project where many hundreds of people invest in this amazing community venture.

"This is a very exciting time and we would love you to be part of it when we open, hopefully in the spring."

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The share issue will be open for two months, with the prospectus published online at: www.savethelocks.com.

The Waveney Valley Conkers Tournament at the Geldeston Locks Inn in 2015.

The Waveney Valley Conkers Tournament at the Geldeston Locks Inn in 2015. - Credit: James Bass

This will include a business plan, the society's governing rules, a document explaining community shares and a document describing the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) tax relief scheme.

The pub has been closed since Grain Brewery left the site in September as owner Lee Bellis prepared to auction the pub 16 years after first moving in.

For more information, go to: www.savethelocks.com, email invest@savethelocks.com, or phone 01502 714 661.

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