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)

Archant

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

Book Relief charity chairman John Carvosso with Brenda Evetts. Picture: Sarah Howells

Appledore man leaves lasting legacy with charity helping promote literacy.

Read more
09:44
Andy Skarzynski

North Devon man survived on 50p a day to raise £250 for the charity Send A Cow.

Read more
Yesterday, 19:45
Somersault Festival 2015.

Around 17,000 people flocked to Castle Hill Estate this weekend to party through the rain and sunshine at Somersault Festival.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:55

Police appeal after break in at Barnstaple home on Friday evening.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:20
Bideford Water Festival 2015. Pictures: Graham Hobbs

Bungee jumpers lept from 175ft platform above the River Torridge as part of Bideford Water Festival yesterday (Sunday).

Read more
Yesterday, 09:35
The North Devon Link Road.

Caravan towing could be ‘difficult’ for towing vehicles and outdoor activities disrupted due to strong winds today (Monday).

Read more
Yesterday, 07:24
Scratch is back with his owner Cheryl Mundy

Scratch is returned to his relieved Chittlehampton owner after being found seven miles away thanks to his microchip

Read more
Sunday, July 26, 2015
Scenes from the visit of cruise liner MS Prinsendam to Ilfracombe.

Cruise ship passengers surprised and interested by Damien Hirst’s Verity when the MS Prinsendam called in at Ilfracombe today (Sunday)...

Read more
Sunday, July 26, 2015
Fair Queen Chulmleigh Academy pupil Daisy Parsons, pictured with attendants Morgan Robinson and Katie Elder, and crown bearer Gracie McKinnon-Jones. Picture: Submitted

Town’s 762nd fair will be extended by a day to take in busy programme of events.

Read more
Sunday, July 26, 2015
Barnstaple carnival queen Jasmin Husband is pictured with princesses Donna Barton and Tilly-Lee Brown, carnival committee chairman Andy Shiner and deputy mayor Julie Hunt. Picture: Submitted

Park School teenager lands special role at head of procession.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 12°C

Most Read News

Great British Life


Great British Life

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Digital Edition

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition today E-edition



North Devon's trusted business finder