Campaigners have made a last-ditch effort to save Sheffield’s ‘most haunted’ pub after it was sold to a mystery buyer.
The historic Carbrook Hall pub, in Attercliffe, had been listed for £195,000 and has now officially been sold by Punch Taverns.
But the sale of the famous watering hole – home to leading parliamentarian Colonel John Bright during the English Civil War – has raised fears with Sheaf Valley Heritage and Sheffield CAMRA.
The campaigners have now applied for the pub, whose surviving Grade II-listed stone wing dates back to 1620, to become an Asset of Community Value in a bid to save it from becoming a ‘future supermarket, housing or building site’.
Campaigner Ron Clayton warned if the building was left unoccupied then it was at risk of being ‘stripped’, but he said the ACV application offered a ‘glimmer of hope’.
Sheffield Council confirmed it has received an ACV application for the pub which will be heard on April 15.
The Grade II Listed pub is one of Sheffield’s most famous heritage sites.
It is reputed to be one of the oldest properties in the city dating back to 1620.
However, history books tell how a building has stood on the site since the 12th century with the original building reportedly owned by the Blunt family.
After being used by parliamentarian forces, including by owner Colonel John Bright, in the Civil War it was then used as a Roundhead meeting place during the siege of Sheffield Castle.
Most of the hall was demolished in the 19th century, leaving just one wing which was then turned into a pub.
The pub’s description as being one of Sheffield’s ‘most haunted’ buildings has firmly propelled it into the public eye and made it a well-visited watering hole for tourists and regulars alike.
The pub regularly features in lists of South Yorkshire’s most haunted venues with ‘mischievous spirits’ said to regularly spook its customers.
Mr Holmshaw explained the pub is not only important for people interested in local history, but plays an important role in the community.
He said: “Carbrook Hall made a virtue out of its location, and its community was friendship groups from all over the city who kept coming back.
“The Carbrook Hall was a thriving pub. Not all the time, not every day, and it wasn’t to all tastes – what pub ever is?
“It struggled to make itself heard and visited, trapped by the ring road and hemmed in by modern industrial units and remnants of our Victorian steelmaking past.
“However, The Carbrook Hall may live again, hopefully in the hands of a local brewer and a community interest group who care for its history and the communities that use it.”
Campaigners say the pub has suffered recently from a lack of investment, despite being historically important, full of character and charm.
The pub’s pool room and front bar with its stone wall with inset stoves, feature fireplace with brick surround has drawn many an admirer.
Campaigner Ron Clayton stressed the importance of the pub’s carved wood panelled walls and ornate decorative ceiling, warning that these could be lost under the new owner’s plans.
He said: “What other suitable use can you find for a historic building with links to Sheffield Castle and the Bright family in Sheffield in the 17th Century?
“The panelling is done by the same craftsman as Bolsover Castle. The pub is irreplaceable and plays an important part in the history of Sheffield.
“There are such unique features in there that have been kept away from the eyes of the public for weeks and I would think its just the place for a high class pub serving real ale.”
Sheffield Council has confirmed it has received an ACV application for the pub which will be heard on April 15.
Mr Holmshaw said: “Thanks to the ACV that we submitted a few days before it closed I may not be talking about the pub as though it was the past tense. There is still a glimmer of hope here.”