THREE well-known York pubs are being put up for sale after a large brewing company was bought out by another firm.

The Beeswing Ale House pub in Hull Road, The Bay Horse pub and the Plough pub, both in Fulford, have been put up for sale by the Stonegate Pub Company after it purchased Ei Group PLC.

The decision comes after the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) - a non-ministerial government department responsible for strengthening business competition - said the proposed purchase could reduce choice for pub-goers in Fulford and Hull Road, where the combined business under the Stonegate Pub Company would face "limited competition".

The CMA confirmed that it was accepting Stonegate’s proposals to sell off the three pubs in principle.

The Press approached both the Stonegate Pub Company and Ei Group, but neither was able to comment.

The landlady of the Bay Horse pub, Donna Emmett said she could not comment, other than to reassure customers that it was "business as usual" at the pub. It is understood that there are several interested parties in the three pubs.

Meanwhile, a spokesman for The Beeswing Ale House pub also added that it was 'business as usual'.

Cllr Keith Aspden, Liberal Democrat ward councillor for Fulford and Heslington, said: “Over the last few years, I have campaigned to protect our local pubs, including the Saddle Inn in Fulford. Therefore, I feel it is important that the Stonegate Pub Company ensures that their proposals provide future arrangements which enable these local pubs to flourish in our community.

“The importance of local pubs cannot be underestimated and residents have already expressed their concerns that any takeover of local pubs must not impact on the community, or in this case, the unique character of Fulford. I look forward to working with all involved to ensure that these local pubs can thrive.”

In a statement on December 13, 2019, the CMA said: “The CMA has also investigated the potential impact of the merger in more than 500 local areas across the UK, in which both businesses currently have premises. While sufficient competition will remain after the merger in most cases, the CMA found that the deal could reduce choice for pub goers in 51 local areas where the combined business would face only limited competition.

“The CMA is therefore concerned that, if the businesses were to merge, pub goers in those areas could be faced with price increases or lower quality products and services.”