Donna and Carl Brayshaw purchased the freehold of The Sun Inn from one of the major pubcos some 5 years ago. At that time the pub was closed, having failed over preceding years and having gained a very poor reputation within the community. Donna and Carl set to work to turn the pub around, making a significant personal investment to make it once again the heart of the community. Lepton is a satellite village of Huddersfield of some 6,800 residents and there is a strong community bond within the village.
Towards the end of 2015, Kirklees Council announced that, owing to cutbacks, it was going to close Lepton Library. Upon hearing the news and having heard and read about Pub is The Hub, Donna made contact with us to discuss the possibility of developing a Community Library in the pub. Donna had already got the support of local Councillors and other local groups and residents. A visit to the pub by our Yorkshire/NE Adviser confirmed that The Sun Inn had the facilities to be able to accommodate the library and that Donna and Carl had the commitment, drive and experience to be able to add this community service to the pub. Donna, Pub is The Hub and the local authority worked together to formulate a plan for delivering the Community Library as close as possible to the date of closure of the existing library. Pub is The Hub also supported the project with a grant from our Community Services Fund, to which Kirklees Council contributed through the Huddersfield District Committee. The library services also donated just over 300 books.
As well as providing access to books, the Community Library has 2 computers which can be used by villagers to access wider library and council services as well as the internet generally. A printer has also been installed.
On Friday 25th March the Community Library at The Sun, Lepton was formally opened by Donna and Carl and local author, Nick Stead.
Outcomes so far:
The Sun Community Library opened its doors on the 25th March, one week after the local library closed. Without the offer from Donna and Carl, Lepton would have completely lost its library services.
Many local residents and groups have already given their support to the new project and Donna has reported an upturn in pub business turnover since news of the project has started to spread.
Lessons to Learn:
Where licensees are experienced and have true commitment to realising a project, it can happen quite quickly. From conception to opening took only 6 months.
Licensees, Pub is The Hub and Local Authorities working together can achieve positive results for the community.
|Total Project Costs||£5,000|
|Contribution from Local Authority||See below|
|Contribution from Private Sector||£0.00|
|Contribution from Licensee||£1,000|
|CSF Grant||£4,000 which included a contribution from Kirklees Council|
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