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Pub owner sells up but the drinks will keep on flowing
RESIDENTS are relieved after the owners of a Headington pub agreed a sale that is expected to see the building stay open for drinkers.
The Fairview Inn, in Glebelands, was put up for sale by owners Enterprise Inns earlier this year.
Oxford City Council designated it as a community asset on July 16 this year after residents launched a campaign to save it.
They then had six weeks to submit a notification that they wished to become a preferred bidder. But this did not happen after residents were unable to raise the £385,000 needed to buy the pub, and the 1959 building was then put on the market.
Fleurets, the property company marketing the building, set a deadline of October 11 for commercial bids and now a sale has been agreed.
In a statement on Monday, a spokesman for Enterprise Inns confirmed that a sale had been agreed for the pub and said the company understood the site would continue to run as a pub.
Residents living close to the pub have welcomed the news.
Glebelands resident Darren Grant, who organised the campaign to try to save the pub, said: “It’s good news. Our ultimate aim was to keep it maintained as a pub.
“It serves the local community and is an important asset to the local area. It might stay the same as it is now or go upmarket.
“I don’t think it really matters as long as it’s something the local community can make use of.”
Secretary of the Oxford Campaign for Real Ale Steve Lawrence said: “We are always keen to see pubs stay open and so we would be keen to see it kept unchanged. I am sure it could succeed as a pub with the right people in.”
But manager Glyn Millard said he was worried about the future of the pub, and his own future.
Mr Millard, who has managed the pub for 29 years, said he had not been told by Enterprise Inns whether he would keep his job after the sale.
He added: “I am just going to wait and see and take it on the chin. It sounds ideal if it will continue as a pub, but in what form will it be?
“If they remove the darts and television with Sky Sports, it will destroy part of the pub.
“I have had about 30 or 40 viewings in the time it’s been up for sale and no one has asked me about takings or how it works as a business.
“Instead it’s been property developers who want to develop the site.”