Town's 'oldest' pub beats the bulldozer

A pub  thought to be the oldest in Leyland  is due to reopen after surviving demolition.
A pub thought to be the oldest in Leyland is due to reopen after surviving demolition.
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A pub – thought to be the oldest in Leyland – is due to reopen after surviving demolition.

The Old Original Seven Stars was made an ‘asset of community value’ after the Campaign for Real Ale stepped in to try and save it last year when it was put up for sale.

Vicky McManus

Vicky McManus

After standing empty for months, the Slater Lane pub has been taken over by a small local pub chain which has been carrying out work on the historic building.

The freehouse with an emphasis on real and craft ale and gin – renamed Th’Owd Seven Stars.

CAMRA welcomed the takeover.

It has been acquired by the Holt Pub Company, which also has pubs in Burscough and Much Hoole, and is due to launch one in Preston city centre.

A pub  thought to be the oldest in Leyland  is due to reopen after surviving demolition.

A pub thought to be the oldest in Leyland is due to reopen after surviving demolition.

Dave Linley, pub protection officer with CAMRA’s Central Lancashire branch, said: “It would appear that the previous owners have sold it or leased it to the Holt Pub Company. They are, I understand, going to reopen it in the next few weeks. It will be selling real ale.”

After securing it as an asset of community value, following its application into South Ribble Council, CAMRA was then given six months to put in a bid for it.

But Dave said: “We’re a voluntary organisation and don’t have that sort of money.”

However, the move meant planning permission was needed to change the building’s use, delaying any move by developers. “The asset of community value delayed things until the change in the law came in, said Dave. “The law is in a much better state than it was before.

“It’s not quite a success story yet because it’s not reopened, but it’s looking really good and we’re looking to get in there and celebrate in a few weeks time.”

Vicky McManus, area manager for the Holt Pub Company area, said £15,000-£20,000 had been spent refurbishing the pub which is due to reopen at the end of May.

Formerly manager of the Dunkirk Hall in Leyland, Vicky, who comes from Bamber Bridge, said; “We know the area and how to work in it.

“We’re glad we’ve got it.

“We’ve been in touch with CAMRA. They’re really happy it’s been kept as a pub and not thrown into flats.”

The pub will managed by Sam Carter, from Chorley.

The Holt Pub Company describes itself on its website as “is a relaxed pub group with a difference”.

It says: “All our venues have live music every week, usually a Saturday, providing great free entertainment. We also have various quiz and themed weekly events.”