Farmers Arms owners speak out against pub campaign

15:44 04 June 2014

Farmers Arms

Farmers Arms' owners Allan and Jennie Lindsay say they have been 'victimised' by local people.

Archant

Owners say they have been ‘living a nightmare’ as future of the pub in Woolsery remains uncertain.

THE owners of a pub in Woolsery have spoken out against a campaign to ‘save’ the Farmers Arms saying its future is still uncertain.

Last week, the Gazette reported how villagers had backed a campaign started on Facebook to push for the repair and reopening of the dilapidated pub.

But Allan and Jennie Lindsay, who bought the pub in 2004, said the past three years had been ‘a nightmare they wish they could wake up from’.

The couple ran the pub successfully for six years, before a turn in Mrs Lindsay’s health left them having to sell the Farmers Arms on doctor’s orders.

“Jennie worked a minimum of 80 hours a week, and only had three nights off in six years; she put her heart and soul into it,” said Mr Lindsay.

“But it got too much and the doctor told her she had to stop or it would finish her off.”

The pub was leased out on several occasions but was making no money, culminating in it closing its doors in December 2012.

Mr Lindsay, who left his job as an executive at BT in Liverpool to move to North Devon 21 years ago, said he felt people had boycotted the pub when it was open.

“We didn’t want this to happen – this was supposed to be our investment for our retirement and for our children,” he said.

“Why would anyone invest half-a-million into buying and refurbishing a business just to let it fall into disrepair on purpose? Logic dictates they simply would not.

“We have done nothing wrong; these were circumstances beyond our control.

“If people want their pub back so badly, why did they not use it when it was open?”

The couple confirmed work was ongoing to repair the building and they were in the process of raising funds to repair the roof.

As for the future, Mr Lindsay said he wanted the couple to focus on ‘getting better’ before making a decision on the outcome.

“We want to make the right decision and right now this has driven us to despair and we’re not in a good place to do that,” added Mrs Lindsay.

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3 comments

  • Its unfortunate that the pub is as it is, it used to be the heart and soul of the village. What the owners need to understand is that whilst they may hold the morgatge the pub always has and always will belong to the village. It takes a certain type of personality to run a pub, and the owners managed to upset and alienate enough of the village that they lost the support of it. The general concencous is that whilst the current owners can profit from the pub in any way, the village is unlikely to support any manager or landlord. For the pub to survive and be restored to its former status and support, it needs to be sold. Please Mr & Mrs Lynsey, sell and let the village have its heart back

    Report this comment

    Harry K

    Thursday, June 5, 2014

  • Totally agree with the comments above. Plus Uncooked or still frozen in the middle food. Some of the older customers stopped going in because it was to cold.

    Report this comment

    Div

    Thursday, June 5, 2014

  • I appreciate that the owners should be allowed to speak out, but they also need to know why people stopped going to the Farmers Arms. The place was freezing cold !! Unlike the lager which was usually warm and stale. When the fire was lit it smoked that badly that you could have a cigarette and nobody would notice. The replaced flooring in the main bar was extremely dangerous to walk on if it was raining, especially when the water used to run down the wall beside the dart board. Alan & Jenny were not victimised because they are from Liverpool, the truth is that he is not a very likeable person and has no idea how to run a pub.

    Report this comment

    BC

    Thursday, June 5, 2014

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