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Fox and Goose co-operative pub share offer outlined

Report of meeting of 27 April

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Regulars campaigning to save the Fox and Goose in Hebden Bridge heard details of the planned share offer to buy the pub at a public meeting on Saturday (April 27).

Fox and Goose meeting

The Fox Friends steering group – elected to spearhead the community buy-out - reported that a co-operative society had now been created. This meant a share offer could be launched as soon as formal acceptance of the purchase offer was received.

Supporters present at the meeting were given a draft prospectus and updated business plan to study in the run-up to the share offer. They heard that the share offer would need to raise around £130,000 to buy the pub and pay for any necessary refurbishments. The aim is always to retain its traditional character.

The steering group also reported that the Fox was now listed as a community asset by Calderdale Council and explained how this gave the community chance to raise the money to buy the pub before it could be sold to anyone else.

The outline was then followed by a question-and-answer session so that potential share- holders could make sure they fully understood the process. In response to a question from the audience, the meeting heard that co-operative pubs were now springing up across the UK with 17 already up and running.

Steering group chairman Cllr Dave Young said: “We’d like to thank everyone for turning up at the public meeting to show their commitment to the co-operative campaign. We do appreciate that there are many other people out there who couldn’t make it on the day, but who are very keen to be a part of this exciting community venture. We will be keeping every- one informed on our website, email group and social media, in the local media and via posters in the pub. Please watch this space!”

The documents are available to download from the Fox Friends website.

The Fox & Goose, a well-loved traditional real-ale pub in Heptonstall Road, Hebden Bridge, has been under threat since last year due to the landlady’s deteriorating health – and the local community is bidding to buy it and run it as West Yorkshire’s first Co-operative pub.

Share deal will offer chance to own community pub

Thursday, 4 April 2013

A new co-operative organisation has been set up to enable the community to buy out the Fox and Goose pub in Hebden Bridge.

The Friends of the Fox and Goose have now registered the co-operative - known as an Industrial and Provident Society - with the Financial Services Authority. This allows the community to launch a share offer to raise the money needed to buy the pub.

Fox and Goose

The society is called Fox and Goose (Hebden Bridge) Limited and has been set up to buy and run the pub for the benefit of the community.

These means that the share offer can be made as soon as possible – and the Fox Friends steering group is aiming to publish a prospectus on May 1. The offer period will run throughout the month with chance to buy shares up to May 31

A public meeting will take place at the Fox and Goose, in Heptonstall Road, on Saturday, April 27, at 1pm. At the meeting, pub regulars and potential shareholders will be able to find out more about the process and examine the prospectus and business plan.

Chair of the Steering Group Cllr Dave Young said, “There’s been massive support for the campaign to save the Fox and Goose, and a great deal of hard work has gone on behind the scenes to get us to this point.

“Now we have reached a critical stage and the time has come where people will have the chance to own a share in this well-loved local pub. But it’s vital at this point that we know people are committed to saving the Fox and that we have the level of investment to go ahead.

“Please do come along to the public meeting where you can find out what it will mean to be a shareholder in West Yorkshire’s first co-operative pub.”

Unlike many pubs which are under threat, the Fox and Goose is extremely popular with the local community as well as tourists and visitors to Hebden Bridge alike, but is facing closure because of the owner’s deteriorating health.

The Fox Friends community group was formed last year to look at buying the pub and a steering group elected from within the 100+ members has been working towards turning it into a co- operative.

Previously, on the HebWeb

HebWeb News: Fox Friends back Co-operative Pub plans (Sept 2012)

HebWeb News - All aboard for the Fox Friends Beer Bus beano

HebWeb News: Fox Friends Drink to the Dirty Half Dozen (5 April 2012)

HebWeb News: Fox and Goose Pub Co-op

HebWeb Forum: Fox and Goose Pub Co-op (Jan-March 2012)