A campaign to create Leeds’s first community-run pub has boosted by a healthy dose of people power at the weekend.
A community planning day saw supporters descend on Bramley Community Centre to help compile a business plan to help take the Barley Mow Pub into community ownership.
Community researchers went on a pub and cafe crawl, chatting to local people and finding out how the Barley Mow could complement what’s out there, rather than competing with existing businesses.
There was a lot of enthusiasm for a friendly, safe, affordable place for food, drinks and socialising. In particular, people liked the idea of music, a training or apprenticeship scheme and workspaces on the first floor.
Volunteers completed a business analysis, started work on a logo, a website, set up an instagram account (@mowsupporters), and researched Bramley activities.
Fran Graham, from the Mow Supporters, posted on Facebook:
“A lot of the people we spoke to didn’t know about all of the activities already happening in the area, and our researchers were surprised about how much is on in this area. Maybe a Barley Mow radio station could help by reminding people about the great stuff that’s available.
“There were some really BRIGHT ideas suggested today. We love the idea of music in the cellar (soundproofed of course), a veg, bread and coffee depot, and a summer bar camp for trainees. Thank you to to everyone who joined in – top work!”
The Barley Mow Supporters group, who are hoping to take the Barley Now Pub into community ownership following its closure last year, hope to evolve it into a pub of the future that offers much more than just a place to drink.
Best and final offers for the pub are being sought by 12 noon on Thursday 30 May. It’s understood someone wanting to set up a Chinese restaurant is also interested in the building, along with other parties.
Barley Mow was a former home ground of the Bramley rugby league club, who moved there in 1881. The club used the nearby Barley Mow public house as changing rooms. A blue plaque marks the history surrounding the pub.
The Grade II Listed pub closed last year and is on the market for £450,000.
Last month more than 100 people attended a community consultation event at the pub to discuss potential activities there.
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