Pembrokeshire community joins forces to buy 250-year-old village pub

  • Video report by West Wales reporter Jess Main

A Pembrokeshire community is celebrating after taking another step towards saving their beloved village pub, despite the difficulties brought about by the pandemic.

Residents of St Dogmaels joined forces to raise nearly £250,000 and had their offer to buy The White Hart Inn accepted last week.

The pub, which has been part of the community for 250 years, called time and closed its doors back in 2019 - but villagers were determined not to lose their local for good.

They came up with a plan to buy the pub and run it as a community venture, raising money through selling shares and organising events, along with a grant from the local council.

The residents' hard work has seen them garner support from across Wales - and the world.

Committee member Julie Owen said: "We've now got 370 shareholders. Most of those are in the village, but some are in other parts of Wales; some of them are in England.

"We've got shareholders in New Zealand, Australia, America, Canada - it's amazing. The response has been incredible."

The village 'beerometer' tracks the fundraising so far.

A 'beerometer' in the village shows how much progress has been made, and is spurring the committee on to do more.

They still need a little more funding and members say they're looking into loans and grants, but they're confident they can get there.

Committee chair Justin Walters said: "What this has shown is the community pulling together. We'll get through Covid, and we'll have the White Hart to go back to once we're all safe and able to do so.

"I was in the Air Force for 30 years and whenever I came home on leave, Christmas or the summer, it's the first place I'd go to. It's the one place I knew I could connect with all my friends.

"So that's what I'm looking forward to about the pub. It's such a friendly, welcoming place. It's going to be incredible."Julie added: "There's a lot of people in the village who live on their own, so we need places like The White Hart".