THE Britannia Inn has been listed as an Asset of Community Value.
Wells City Council had nominated the pub on Bath Road, Wells, for Asset of Community Value status after local residents made clear their wish to save it as a pub when it was put up for sale. It has been empty for more than two years and is being marketed by the Caldecotte Group with a guide price of £350,000.
Somerset Council says that following its assessment, it has accepted that the pub is of community value and details of the property have been entered on to the register of Assets of Community Value, and it has notified the Land Registry.
The community now has an opportunity to put together a bid to buy the pub, known affectionately as The Brit. A small group of local residents have volunteered to be part of a steering group investigating how this can be achieved.
Councillor Theo Butt Philip, a city and county councillor who is spearheading the project and is a member of the steering group, said: “This is fantastic news. I’m delighted but not surprised. This demonstrates what we all knew – what an important community asset The Britannia was and hopefully will be again.
“To some extent this was the easy part. Now we need to rally together to make sure we can raise the money to buy the pub for the community.”
The steering group has recently conducted a consultation about the pub that aimed to see how important people feel it is to have a pub in East Wells, what they would like the pub to offer if it does reopen, and who might be willing to help with the community project. Responses from the consultation questionnaires – which were printed in last month’s Wells Voice and available to answer online – will be collated before a public meeting is held to share the outcome and discuss next steps.