The Northumberland Arms has served our community as a traditional local pub since 1824, when the premises were leased by Charles Twist from the Duke of Norfolk. It is a pub with a unique character, its multi room layout retaining its charm and warm welcoming atmosphere. In recent times, several local pubs have closed their doors and those that remain have had to look to new ways to survive and prosper.
In November 2016, the Tenants of the pub, Geoff Tarbatt and Margaret Houghton, informed Robinsons Brewery of their intention to end their tenure and retire. Robinsons Brewery did not consider the pub to be a viable part of their estate, and so placed the pub for sale on the open market in January 2017.
To try and prevent the permanent closure of The Northumberland Arms, which is such an important asset to our community, we managed with strong community support to successfully list ‘The Thumb’ as an Asset of Community Value, which gave us time to try and raise the funds to purchase the pub ourselves, and prevent its sale to developers.
We entered negotiations with Robinsons, and eventually persuaded them that our campaign was serious and acheivable, wheron they accepted our offer for the Northumberland Arms and are supportive of our wish to continue to run it as a pub, free of any ties with them.
In June 2017, we sucessfully set up and registered our Community Benefit Society with the Financial Conduct Authority - The Northumberland Arms Community Society Limited.
Our Business Plan and Share Offer documents were written and published in July 2017, and our share offer documents were awarded 'Community Shares Standard Mark' in August.
The Share Offer went live on 2nd August 2017, and over the course of the next few weeks added our Share Offer to Crowdfunder.com.
At the close of our share offer on 30th September 2017, we had raised a whopping £297,800, and the future of The Northumberland Arms was secured.