Owner sets deadline and tells occupiers they are ‘trespassing’

The pub's occupiers are channeling the spirit of Winston Churchill in their bid to defy its demolitionThe pub's occupiers are channeling the spirit of Winston Churchill in their bid to defy its demolition

The occupiers of the demolition-threatened Borough Arms Pub in Forches Avenue say they have no intention of leaving the disused building.

Residents of the Forches Estate have been protesting against plans to demolish the pub and replace it with houses and flats.

And they were told in a letter from the owner, Mr Hicks, on Monday they were ‘trespassing’ and should leave by 10am.

Protesters have been occupying the building for over two weeks in an attempt to force Chichester Homes to reconsider its proposals.

“We are not leaving,” said Tim Woodger, who has been living in the disused pub with three other protesters since February 15. “This is our last community asset and if we don’t try and preserve that it’s going to be lost.

“We expected him (Mr Hicks) to turn up at 10 o’clock but there’s been no sign of him.

“Hopefully we will get some sort of negotiation going.

“To us this is a valuable asset and it’s time to give the community a go with it.”