A community group has become the first to use the community right to bid to acquire a pub, according to local infrastructure body Locality, which provides a support service for organisations that want to use the right.
The Save the Ivy House group bought the Ivy House, in the London borough of Southwark, for £810,000 last week. They received some advice from Locality.
The pub was put up for sale last October, and the group put in a successful claim to Southwark Council to have the pub listed through the right to bid rules. These were introduced by the Localism Act and give communities the right to apply to have buildings and land listed as "assets of community value". They then get six months to raise the cash to buy them.
The group received £500,000 of conditional loan finance from the Architectural Heritage Fund to buy the pub. It now intends to raise money through a community share issue to provide the capital to run the building as a public house in the long term.
Another community group in Bath has raised £720,000 to buy a local pub, the Bell Inn.
The Bell Inn Community Buyout group has raised the money through a community share issue and a bank loan. it hopes to acquire the pub in the next few weeks.