Community plan to raise £10,000 and rescue Sheffield pub

Regulars are trying to save The Closed Shop in Crookesmoor.
Regulars are trying to save The Closed Shop in Crookesmoor.
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A Sheffield pub could reopen under community ownership as early as next week.

Regulars at The Closed Shop in Crookesmoor were shocked when the pub shut unexpectedly last month.

Its parent company, Reet Ale Pubs, had ceased trading, leaving manager Chris Rogers and his staff jobless.

Chris was already considering a community share scheme to bring The Closed Shop under the ownership of locals. He sprang into action and has now come up with a business plan for a 'tenancy-at-will' option to get back into businesses with community backing - albeit temporarily.

A campaign to raise about £10,000 is up and running, and Chris hopes to be back open and working with landlord Punch Taverns as early as next week.

"We are very confident," he said. "We have had about 20 people get in touch pledging money, and we have already started to receive funds as well.

"We do feel like a lot of people in the local community are really getting behind it."

If the pub does reopen under community ownership, it is only likely to be a short-term arrangement. Chris and Punch Taverns are in talks with an as yet unnamed Sheffield brewery about taking on The Closed Shop long-term.

But Chris believes people are keen to get behind his 'low risk' business plan and help get the pub open as soon as possible.

"It's an opportunity to have shared ownership and a little bit of a stake in the pub," he said.

"A lot of people want to see it open and feel it's detrimental to the local area to have it closed.

"We had a meeting on Monday which was a little bit last minute but we had a good turnout. We've also had support from our local councillor Adam Hanrahan.

"We've definitely got a lot of people who are keen."

Reet Ale also ran The Punchbowl in Crookes, which is now reopen, and the Three Tuns in the city centre, which remains shut.

Chris's full business plan is available online at closedshopcommunity.weebly.com. People can either contact him directly with larger donations, or give smaller amounts through a crowd funding website.

People can also follow @closedshopcomm on Twitter for regular updates.

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