That's sad. Pubs form a part of the glue that keep our community together. Just this week the United St Saviour's Charity (www.ustsc.org.uk) - our oldest local charity dating back to Henry VI and Chartered by Henry VIII has bought the freehold of Simon the Tanner in Long Lane.
As a charity we also own The Wheatsheaf and The Market Porter in Borough Market, and we are looking at purchasing other pubs in the local area to make sure that this aspect of the community is preserved. We did press-release this but it wasn't picked up:
An iconic Borough pub has today been bought - by a local Southwark charity.
The freehold of the Grade II listed Simon the Tanner pub, in Long Lane, has been purchased by the United St Saviour’s Charity . The news comes at a time when Southwark has seen more pub closures than almost anywhere else in England .
The pub takes its name from the surrounding area which was once the centre of the tanning industry. ‘Simon the Tanner’ was the Coptic Orthodox saint associated with the story of the moving the Mokattam Mountain, Egypt, in around 975 AD.
Councillor Tim McNally, a trustee of the Charity, said: “Purchasing the freehold of Simon the Tanner demonstrates our commitment to keeping this iconic pub as a pub. We also own the historic Wheatsheaf and Market Porter, both in Borough Market. The income that we receive from these pubs helps to support Southwark pensioners through our almshouse provision and local community organisations through charitable grants ”.
Julie Friel, the pub’s landlady, said: “We welcome St Saviour’s as a freeholder that is committed to improving the local community. It means that we can focus on our aim of delivering good beer, good food and a great community pub.”
I hope that if anyone hears of any other local pub coming up for sale that you'll let us know.
We use the income from our properties to fund the ever increasing grants programme that means that this year we'll be giving almost £600,000 to local groups.
Am sad if the Whitesmith's has gone to another residential only development but hopefully we can - as with Simon the Tanner - ensure that we get a pub with flats above and not just a loss of yet another pub
I remember when the Simon didn't do so well. The new flats weren't built & Long Lane was just a cut through for traffic.
The Simon, Gillys (Ancient Britain) Lord Nelson , Valentine & The George were all trading at the same time 20 years ago. That's a 150 yard stretch.
It was closed on a number of occasions & numerous landlords lost money.
Should you keep pubs as they are just in case an area becomes gentrified? Would areas ever evolve if you did?