Locals fume over loss of Penygroes pub
6:10am Wednesday 30th October 2013 in News
PLANS to convert a Penygroes pub into a shop have been bitterly condemned by locals.
Campaigners say the loss of The Farmers Arms – the last pub in the village – would be a grievous loss to the community.
But Gurdip Dale, a member of the family who have bought the premises, insists the new business would breath new life into a village which is set to undergo rapid expansion over the next few years.
Concern flared after the Farmers closed last month and villagers got wind of conversion plans. “It’s quite tragic really,” said resident Alun Lewis. “The Norton’s Arms closed a while back and now we’ve lost the Farmers.
“It’s an historic building which has been there for over a century. Its outbuildings once housed the first school in Penygroes and for many years it was the headquarters of Penygroes RFC.
“Villagers don’t believe there is a need for another shop in the village.”
Another resident said locals had enjoyed the pub’s comfortable environment.
“So comfortable, in fact, that we almost felt like family – however due to the closure, it now feels like members of that family have emigrated and will never be together again,” she added.
“We believe that if taken over by new owners, and retained as a pub, it could once again be a valuable asset to Penygroes.”
“But Mr Dale, whose family run Sid’s Supermarket in Cross Hands, maintained the pub was no longer viable. “I’m afraid the figures just didn’t add up,” he said.
“The Farmers has been on the market for well over two years. Pubs are dying because people are drinking at home these days. We’re in the process of buying it with the intention of turning it into a shop with flats.
“We feel a convenience store will complement the Post Office and look forward to providing a new business and employment opportunities in Penygroes."
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