Lincoln villagers raise £185k to buy local pub

A much-loved Lincoln pub almost closed its doors for good before local people raised thousands of pounds to save it.

The small village of Harmston has lost lots of community spaces over the years, so it came as a shock for residents when the Thorold Arms went up for sale.

It was built in 1740 and has traded as a pub ever since, but the villagers feared that it could be turned into housing after the old tenants decided that they wanted a change of occupation.

The pub closed in January and, without any buyers coming forward, the village decided that they would buy it for themselves, raising a staggering £185,000.

Keith Elms has lived in Harmston for ten years and decided to step up as one of the directors for the project.

He told The Lincolnite: “We came together and asked whether we wanted to stand by while the pub was closed. We knew that once it was gone then it was gone.

“It’s a great shame that all these local pubs are being forced to close around the country, we didn’t want that to happen here.”

It has been trading as a pub for years.

The group held a village meeting and decided to delay the sale with an asset of community value order while they debated whether they could raise the money needed to buy the pub.

When the news got out that the village wanted to save the pub, around 125 investors came forward.

Keith added: “I was absolutely ecstatic and excited for the future of the pub. We have now been able to purchase the pub and we have enough money left over to give it a full refurbishment.

“It’s great news for the village. We are now in the second phase of the plan and we’re making sure that it is ready for business and for some new tenants.

“We would love if we could have it completely renovated in the next three months, and it would be great if we could have it open for Christmas.”