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"Amazing" response to York pub buy-out plan
YORK residents looking to buy their local pub say they have been “overwhelmed” by the response to their plans.
More than 100 people have expressed an interest in joining the new Golden Ball Cooperative, which aims to buy a ten-year lease on the pub, on the corner of Victor Street and Cromwell Road in Bishophill.
Under the plans, first revealed by The Press last Tuesday, the pub would become the first in York to be run by its community, with investors owning £500 or more of shares, in return for a say in the pub’s running and an annual dividend of up to five per cent.
An informal meeting was held in the pub last week, so local people could learn more, and the share issue will be formally launched on Monday in The Priory Street Centre.
Pete Kilbane, secretary of the cooperative, said: “The response has been mind-blowing. So many people love this pub and we have had a great response. It’s amazing and overwhelming - it has been fantastic.There is a great community spirit here.”
Current licensees Dave and Linda Foster have been looking to retire for some years, and have now struck a deal with the co-operative.
The number of co-operative enterprises in Britain has increased by around ten per cent since 2010, rising to around 6,000.
Michael Fairclough, the national Co-operative Group’s head of community and co-operative investment, said: “Communities are rediscovering the benefits of self help and mutual ownership - taking ownership into their own hands and having a say in the running of businesses and services important to their needs. We believe that co-operation has a significant part to play in the rebuilding of a more balanced and stable economy.”
The Golden Ball won the top award in The Press Pub Awards 2009/10 and has one of the best-preserved interwar pub interiors in the city.