The sun shines as Wickham Market show their support
At midday on Saturday 12th May in bright sunshine over 200 residents arrived on ‘the Hill’ in the centre of Wickham Market in support of The George Community Pub project. People of all ages congregated for a group photograph to celebrate the launch of a share issue to raise funds to buy the old George Pub. The atmosphere was terrific and made all the more enjoyable by the issue of a free drinks voucher for when the pub opens.
The noise and excitement built as the Church clock rang twelve and everybody came onto the square. Suffolk County Councillor Alexander Nicholl addressed everyone using a megaphone to make himself heard across the assembled crowd. He thanked everyone for being there and for offering their support by giving up their time on such a beautiful day.
The table for the free drinks voucher was busy and people were also bringing in their completed application forms, all very encouraging on the first few minutes of the launch.
One couple Derek and Margaret Stebbings who are residents of Wickham Market brought a photograph taken in 1960 to show a gathering they had outside the old George Pub just after their wedding bands had been read. This has sparked many fond memories of village life and with their 60th Wedding anniversary due in two years time we hope it will coincide with the reopening of the New George. Celebrations all round - thank you Derek and Margaret.
Situated in the heart of the conservation area, the Grade II listed George was the last pub open in Wickham Market when it was severely damaged by fire in 2013. Despite how it looks now, heritage experts have confirmed that it can be reconstructed, retaining its listed status and historic timbers.
A committee spokesman said “The George Pub represents a challenge for the village. The target for raising shares is £300k and the minimum the community needs to raise to buy the pub is £100k. It’s a big target and although the minimum share-holding is £50 we encourage all that can afford it to invest more. Other villages have achieved this and if we all pull together there is no doubt we can save the George”.
Click on the button below to find out more about buying shares.