Don't miss a story sign up to the North Devon Gazette's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Woolsery villagers take action against derelict pub

11:20 28 May 2014

Just some of the residents pushing for action to be taken against the Farmers Arms (pictured behind)

Just some of the residents pushing for action to be taken against the Farmers Arms (pictured behind)


Villagers say Woolsery has been left ‘without a heart’ after vacant pub falls into state of disrepair.

The Farmers Arms in Woolsery.The Farmers Arms in Woolsery.

WOOLSERY residents are making a stand against a dilapidated vacant pub which has left their village ‘without a heart’.

The Farmers Arms pub was once the ‘hub of the village’ but since closing in December 2012 has fallen into a state of disrepair.

Now its damaged thatched roof is covered by a fading tarpaulin and villagers are becoming increasingly worried at the safety and appearance of the building.

In March, Peter Hamilton, who lives in the village, successfully applied to Torridge District Council for the building to become a community asset of value.

“We want to see the building preserved and available once more to the community and visitors,” said Mr Hamilton.

“The nearest pub now is three miles away. It is like Woolsery has been left without a heart.”

Andrea Cann, who also lives in the village, was the landlady of the pub for 15 years before she sold it to the current owner 10 years ago.

“It makes me feel sick to see it like this – it was such a good pub,” she said.

“It was lovely and clean, painted black and white with flowers hanging outside.

“The pub was always busy, even in the winter, but in 2012 it shut for good and it is just so disheartening to see it like this after everything I put into it.”

Andy and Sarah Fryatt, who run the Costcutter store and post office next door to the Farmers Arms, said the closure had affected their business.

“We have definitely seen a decline in the evening business,” said Mr Fryatt.

“People used to go for a drink or lunch and then come into the shop to buy their evening meal, but now we have lost that trade.

“I think it has also affected the number of visitors to the area as well because they take one look at the pub in its current state and think it’s horrible.”

Villagers have set up a group on Facebook called the Woolsery Action Group, which has gained more than 100 members.

Mr Hamilton added: “The main purpose of the Woolsery Action Group is to preserve, conserve and keep the Farmers Arms as the public house for the community of Woolsery and its visitors.

“The community needs to continue to put pressure on the council and its representatives in order to succeed.”

Torridge confirmed that the owner of the pub had appealed the decision to make the building an asset of community value.

Councillor Philip Collins, leader of Torridge, said: “Torridge, together with the parish, has been aware of the concerns relating to this building within the centre of the village.

“An owner or owners of a listed building are expected to maintain that building in sound, secure and weather-tight condition.

“The matter is being monitored by council officers with all avenues being explored, and we are having ongoing dialogues with the owner.”

The Gazette tried to contact the owner for comment but was unsuccessful.

Other News Stories

Singer Ella Eyre is supporting the Dogs Trust campaign this Christmas

Dogs Trust reveals the shocking, lazy and farcical excuses used by people dumping their pets in the last 12 months

Read more
Traffic jam

Traffic is moving slowly through Barnstaple town centre this morning (Tuesday) following a crash at the TA centre roundabout between Eastern Avenue and Alexandra Road.

Read more
Bike Shed store manager Paul Belton and Smuggler organiser Marcus Chapman present the cheque to Emma Lowe of North Devon Hospice. Picture: Leo Cooper

Smuggler sportive organisers announce dates for next year’s pedal-pounding ride

Read more
Police will be testing motorists for drink driving over Christmas

Officers will be on patrol throughout December

Read more
Caroline Cree of Devon Air Ambulance Trust and Alex Bass of Vospers Mazda hand over the keys to car draw winner Tony White (centre). Picture: Submitted

Devon Air Ambulance Trust supporter Tony White of Combe Martin has picked up they keys to a brand new Mazda2.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:45
Lorraine Cleverdon and Chris Taylor from Highbullen Hotel (pictured with host Judi Spiers and Simon Crichton from sponsor Triodos Bank) pick up one of two awards on the night. Picture: Nick Williams

Gold, silver and bronze at glittering evening for local hotels, restaurants and attractions.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:52
An artist's impression of how the food and retail area at Anchorwood Bank will look

Developers have submitted a planning application for the food and retail area of the Anchorwood Bank development.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:25

Open evening at Appledore Fire Station on Thursday, December 3.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:21
Torridge MP Geoffrey Cox is joined by pupils from Holsworthy Community College and Shebbear College as he presents the first stage of his Parliamentary Petition on rural roads to 10 Downing Sreet. Picture: Submitted

Government urged to do more to improve the condition of rural roads

Read more
Yesterday, 10:11
Crowds will gather for the Bideford light switch on this Sunday

Don’t miss the big switch on this Sunday on the quay

Read more

Christmas in North Devon

Christmas in North Devon

Christmas Magazine

Click here for your ultimate guide to
Christmas in North Devon

Local Weather



max temp: 12°C

min temp: 10°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition E-edition

Search for a job in Devon

Local business directory

North Devon's trusted business finder

Find planning applications