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Villagers in Somersham come together to look at the future of The Duke of Marlborough pub

PUBLISHED: 19:00 14 November 2014

A public meeting was held to see if villagers in Somersham want to save their pub, The Duke of Marlborough.

A public meeting was held to see if villagers in Somersham want to save their pub, The Duke of Marlborough.

More than 150 villagers packed into a public meeting to hear about the future of their only pub.

The event was called in Somersham, near Ipswich, to discuss The Duke of Marlborough.

The meeting heard claims that the establishment is due to close next month – with residents already getting together to fight for its future.

No one from the pub was available to comment about the claims made.

Sarah Caston, 34, is leading the campaign. Speaking after the meeting, she said: “Most people did not know about the project beforehand; we talked about what a community pub is and the different options of how you can set up a company. We are looking to raise awareness with potential investors.

“Ideally, we’d like to do what was done at The Sorrel Horse in Shottisham; they sold shares at £500 each. In the end 900 were sold which gave them £450,000. We may do smaller shares as it’s not as wealthy an area; people have not got the money to spend.”

A new shop was opened by the community in 2012 after the village rallied when the previous store shut in 2007.

Julia Truelove, county councillor, said: “Somersham residents have shown their commitment for not-for-profit enterprises with the successful village shop which is now flourishing and is supported by volunteers.

“At the meeting there were representatives from Battisford who established a community pub in the village with the Punch Bowl.”

A questionnaire has been produced for villagers. Contact marlboroughsomersham@gmail.com for more information.

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