Save The Red Lion Campaign Patrons

  • Sidbury Community Enterprises' community share offer launched to buy the Red Lion
  • Save The Red Lion Campaign Patrons - Rt Hon Hugo Swire MP & The Reverend Susie Williams
  • Campaign's company - Sidbury Community Enterprises - has made an offer to buy the Red Lion
  • East Devon District Council has listed the Red Lion pub as an Asset of Community Value - a significant Campaign milestone

Friday, 28 March 2014

The Exeter Daily Reports Agreed Red Lion Sale

Online newspaper The Exeter Daily reports on agreed sale of Red Lion at -

Pulmans View's Excellent Coverage Of Campaign's Latest

Many thanks to this week’s Pulmans View from Sidmouth for the excellent and extensive coverage of the agreement by Punch Taverns to sell the Red Lion to Sidbury Community Enterprises. Pulmans’ coverage starts on its front page under the banner headline “Campaigners have agreed a deal to save Red Lion pub”.

Whilst Pulmans View’s story continues on page 4 the story of the campaign to retain the Red Lion is addressed in the newspaper’s editorial on page 3 under the editor’s very supportive comments headed “Fancy owning a pub?”

Pulmans View has, all the way through the campaign been incredibly supportive of the aims and objectives that it has striven to achieve.

Pulmans view’s coverage can be read at -

Puublicans Morning Advertiser Reports Red Lion Agreed Sale

Today the Publicans Morning Advertiser reported the agreed sale of the Red Lion in a story headlined Punch agrees to sell Red Lion in Sidbury to community”. The report is at –

Red Lion's Real Asking Price

Whilst it’s great to once again get good coverage in today’s Sidmouth Herald (page 11) of Sidbury Community Enterprises’ attempts to purchase the Red Lion, unfortunately it grossly inflated the asking price that Punch Taverns had placed on the pub!

To set the record straight Punch Taverns were asking £295,000 and not £790,000 for the Red Lion. As the forthcoming share offer prospectus will show, the agreed sale price is significantly below the real asking price and way below the Sidmouth Herald’s reported price!

If the asking price for the Red Lion had been £790,000 as erroneously reported then the Campaign to retain it would never have got off the ground!

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Today's Express & Echo Report On Red Lion Sale

Sidbury pub sale could bring back Red Lion’s roar
Thanks to the Express & Echo for today covering, under the above headline, the agreement by Punch Taverns to sell the Red Lion to Sidbury Community Enterprises.

The story is at -

Today's Western Morning News Report

Pub sale could bring back the Red Lion's roar
Under the above headline today’s Western Morning News carries a report on Punch Taverns decision to agree to sell the Red Lion to Sidbury Community Enterprises.

The report is accessible at -

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Red Lion Purchase - Sale Agreed

Agreement reached for Sidbury Community Enterprises to buy Red Lion pub, Sidbury

Sidbury Community Enterprises is excited to announce that the Red Lion pub in Sidbury looks set to become the first pub in East Devon which having been listed as an Asset of Community Value becomes a community owned pub. The pub’s owner, Punch Taverns, placed it up for sale in April 2013 and in response to a local campaign to retain the pub its owner has now agreed to sell it to Sidbury Community Enterprises.

Once purchased the Red Lion will be owned by Sidbury Community Enterprises which is a community benefit Industrial Provident Society limited company which is run as a co-operative enterprise. 

Sidbury Community Enterprises wants to ensure that the Red Lion becomes a good quality village pub that attracts and retains regular customers. The creation of a Red Lion business has its roots in its local community. The pub will be offered for maximum community use, small or large, formal or informal occasions. Sidbury Community Enterprises intends to support community projects and organisations, as well as providing non-core services to the community.

Sidbury Community Enterprises wants to create opportunities for families, youth and older residents to all see the Red Lion as a social space that they can all share beyond using it for the traditional pub offerings. We will work with community organisations to develop these opportunities. Sidbury Community Enterprises sees the opportunity for our wider community to use the space that the pub has to offer, particularly at times when it is underused.

The next steps in purchasing the Red Lion will be raising the funds need not only to buy it, but also in providing the start up costs for the new Red Lion business, as well funding the refurbishment works required to bring the pub up to acceptable trading standards.

Sidbury Community Enterprises will therefore be launching its community share offer in the next few weeks. Anyone interested in supporting this community initiative will be able to invest up to £20,000 in buying shares at £50 each. Details of this share offer will be
published in April.

In welcoming this exciting milestone in the creation of East Devon’s first community owned pub Chair of Sidbury Community Enterprises, Fred Burnett said “From the very start of our campaign to retain the Red Lion for our local community, under the banner of Save The Red Lion Campaign, a great deal of hard work has gone into being sure that we can make the Red Lion a profitable enterprise.”

Fred Burnett continued “We have a solid business plan and this has allowed us to determine what we think the Red Lion is worth and what we can afford to pay for it. We are very pleased to have agreed a purchase price that is below what the owner has been asking for it. We need the community in Sidbury, and the wider Sid Valley, to now open their wallets and purses in order to raise the funds we need to establish a new Red Lion business.”

We really need everyone to buy as many shares as they can in the new Red Lion business because if we cannot raise all the money needed in the next couple of months then we will not be able to purchase the pub. In those circumstances this community focused venture will not happen. We need local people to help us give the Red Lion back its roar.”

A share offer prospectus will be published next month and anyone who is interested in knowing about the share offer or what Sidbury Community Enterprises plans are for a new Red Lion business will be able to come along to two open days that are planned to be held in Sidbury village hall on Friday 25 April and Saturday 3 May. Please put these dates in your calendar now!

Details of the new Red Lion business share offer will be published next month and anyone who wants details of it, or Sidbury Community Enterprises’ recently published vision for revitalising the pub, should contact or visit the blog at

Thank you for all of your support to date. Please support our ambitious share offer that will be announced in the next few weeks.

Monday, 10 March 2014

Red Lion Purchase - Almost There

We are very pleased to inform you that Punch Taverns have positively responded to Sidbury Community Enterprises’ offer to purchase the Red Lion. This offer has been the subject to a number of discussions with Punch Taverns in recent weeks and we have now arrived at the point where we expect to receive a formal acceptance during the next week.
Whilst this is a very significant point in the campaign that has been running since last May and has been achieved by a lot of hard work by members of the Steering Group and other who have advised it, there still remains much more to be done to actually reach an outright purchase of the pub.
A large amount of funding now needs to be raised in order to reach a point whereby the pub’s ownership can transfer to Sidbury Community Enterprises. Over forthcoming weeks details of this will be circulated across the village and within the Sid Valley. Achieving the successful ownership of the Red Lion will require obtaining a mortgage and/or loans, as well as raising funds through a share offer.
Work is under way in discussing with a commercial lender the terms of a potential mortgage. In addition we will be launching a share offer which will allow individuals or organisations to invest between £50 and £20,000 in Sidbury Community Enterprises. We are working out the timetable for promoting this and will publicise it in the coming weeks. Equally, we are open to offers from any individuals or organisations which are willing to make a loan to Sidbury Community Enterprises, either on a short term or longer term basis.
We have issued our vision for turning the Red Lion into a community village pub for Sidbury and its community, and we have received some positive feedback to this, along with some excellent ideas about using the pub for broader community based activities. With the expectation that Punch Taverns will soon formally accept our offer, we have to turn all of attention to raising the funds to purchase the pub, funding the start-up costs of the new business and undertaking the necessary upgrading works to the pub.
Without strong local support in purchasing shares in the new Red Lion business this project will falter at the final hurdle. Please actively support the share offer once it is announced in the forthcoming weeks. We need your investments and your continuing support.
Please respond positively to our share offer in forthcoming weeks as we cannot let this exciting opportunity slip from our grasp.

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Punch Taverns Reject Offer To Buy Red Lion

As you will be aware Sidbury Community Enterprises recently made an offer to purchase the Red Lion from its owner Punch Taverns. It was about three weeks ago that an offer was made and since then there have been several discussions with Punch Taverns’ representatives.
We have always said that we believed that the price that Punch Taverns was asking for the Red Lion was unrealistic. In order to understand what the more realistic and affordable value of the pub was we have taken advice from a valuer and a building surveyor. Additionally, we have worked out what the likely income and expenditure on a new Red Lion business would be, and we have determined what work needs to be undertaken, and the associated costs, to bring the pub up to a reasonable trading standard.
All of this work has been undertaken in order to allow Sidbury Community Enterprises to make a responsible and realistic offer for the Red Lion. We have now reached a position where we have made a full and final offer to Punch Taverns for the pub and this has now been rejected. We believe that just to increase the offer beyond what is affordable would be poor business sense.
As a result, at this point Sidbury Community Enterprises has not managed to reach agreement to purchase the Red Lion. We understand that Punch Taverns remains committed to selling the pub. Equally, should Punch Taverns, at some point, decide that our full and final offer is acceptable then we remain committed to trying to obtain the Red Lion as a community village pub.
Therefore, at this stage we will wait and see whether Punch Taverns reconsiders its position, as it would be a sad end to nine months effort to retain the pub on behalf of the community.