The oldest pub in Totnes, the Kingsbridge Inn, has been listed as an Asset of Community Value, which means the community will be offered first choice on buying the building if or when is put up for sale.
The pub’s “community use” traces back to 1684, and this means that the community can restore the well-loved pub back to a communal space and prevent it from being turned into a residential dwelling. Thus, an important part of Totnes’s history will remain a part of the community.
The Totnes Heritage Trust announced the news on Thursday.
It said: “Totnes Heritage Trust is pleased to report that its application to South Hams District Council for the Kingsbridge Inn to be listed as an Asset of Community Value has been successful.
“If and when the pub is put on the market for sale the community will be offered first choice on whether to purchase it.”
Many locals were overjoyed with the news, and are looking forward to seeing the pub reopen.
Cllr John Birch, Totnes district councillor and chair of the Heritage Trust said: “I welcome the news that the Totnes Heritage Trust has been successful in its application to South Hams District Council for the Kingsbridge Inn to be listed as an Asset of Community Value. This is great news for the community campaign to save the oldest pub in Totnes. This decision has been welcomed by many in the town.
“If and when the pub is put on the market for sale the ACV will provide the community with an opportunity to purchase it and once again see this wonderful old pub open again for business and community events. It has been closed for far too long and any attempt to turn it into a residential dwelling should be resisted.”
In its recommendation, SHDC said: “It is recommended that the Kingsbridge Inn be listed as an Asset of Community Value, as there was a time in the recent past when the primary use of the building as a public house furthered the social wellbeing and interests of the local community, and it is realistic to think that there could be a time in the next five years when there might be a use of the building again which furthers social wellbeing/interests.”