Page last updated at 17:50 GMT, Monday, 15 June 2009 18:50 UK

Village pub gets 80 new landlords

Farriers' Arms
The Farriers Arms, which dates from 1606, was abandoned

Villagers in Kent have clubbed together to buy their local pub after it was abandoned by the previous landlord.

The Farriers Arms in Mersham, which was put up for sale three months ago, has been bought for £615,000 by a consortium of 80 shareholders.

"On day one the enthusiasm and emotion for the pub was fairly evident," said organiser Richard Bishop.

Members of the consortium began renovating the pub, which dates from 1606, on Monday.

Mr Bishop said the consortium, which includes three plumbers, four bank managers, four teachers, a recruitment consultant and an accountant, hoped to make a profit and pay a dividend.

"With 80-plus shareholders on board, we have got a client base that is ready and raring to go and hopefully going to bring in family, friends and workmates," he said.

Several breweries have expressed an interest in supplying the pub and a manager will be appointed with a view to opening for business before Christmas.

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