Our Journey

Our Journey

May 29th 2018

The share offer is now gathering pace, we have 32 days left before it closes. Please read our prospectus and complete our application pack to become a member of our society.  you will find them on the download page. We also have a donation form for those who just want to give. Thanking you all in anticipation.

May 8th 2018

Share Offer launched at Elston Village Hall Public Meeting.

March 2018

Business Plan and Share Offer prospectus being worked up.

Negotiations with Sales Agents  of the Chequers commence.

Bank account opened with Lloyds bank.

Study Visit to the Abingdon Arms, Beckley, near Oxford carried out, a very successful community owned pub , with the business run by a Tenant  . Very useful Meeting with Chair, Treasurer, and Tenant, gaining insights into the operations of running the pub and good mutually supportive and beneficial working relationship between Management Committee and Tenant.

February 2018

Registration as a Community Benefit Society

Elston Community Pub Limited is formally registered with the Financial Conduct Authority(FCA)  reg. no 7709.

Results of the questionnaire, 111 responses, overwhelming support to keep and use the Chequers, 60 households willing to invest, 13 to donate and 70 offers of help. Weekday meals and Sunday lunches were a popular requirement, as well as a cafe type offering during the day. Lots of ideas for social activities were also given.

 Business Model decided for running the pub business

Following advice from a number of experienced sources in the pub trade, and following much discussion within the Steering group,  we would let the pub to a tenant rather than appoint a manager and try to run the pub ourselves as volunteers. There are financial, practical and experience advantages in this.

Professional Valuation Commissioned and carried out

Valuation and Appraisal visit to The Chequers by Mike Hughes, MJD Hughes Ltd, specialist valuer. Subsequent meeting with Steering group members.

Full report drawn up. Market Appraisal valuation summary  received and submitted to steering group for consideration .



Elston Community Pub Ltd. Management Committee  has been formed. The Plunkett Model Rules for Community Ownership as a Community Benefit Society are formally adopted and signed.

Currently 5 volunteer members of the Steering Group have agreed to be the first members of the legally recognised Management Committee. These people are:

David Pearson – Chairman

Jon Harris – Vice Chairman

Jim Sweeting – Treasurer

Linda Fitzgerald – Secretary

Ann Sankey


18 January 2018

Public Meeting set up to inform, engage and garner support from the local community regarding the scheme to purchase The Chequers. Meeting ran by the Steering Group, and included a presentation by Gordon Stewart of the Plunkett Foundation.

There was an amazing turnout for this meeting; an estimated 140 people from Elston and the surrounding area. Following the meeting, a questionnaire was circulated to over 500 households in Elston and surrounding villages to ascertain views about what services/ activities residents would like the Chequers to offer, levels of interest as customers, volunteers and fundraising.

Here are the minutes from the meeting – in 2 formats, Word and PDF:
Notes – Public Meeting – 18th January 2018 – Word (will automatically download)
Notes – Public Meeting – 18th January 2018 – PDF


5th January 2018

With the guidance of Gordon Stewart, application submitted to Plunkett Foundation to gain a bursary to help the purchase process. This bursary will pay professional fees to enable the community to purchase the pub, such as a survey, valuation and legal fees.

Bursary application of £2,500 is successful, along with funding for a study visit to another community owned pub.


Website www.elstoncommunity.co.uk set up


December 2017

Owner announced intention to dispose (5 December 2017). This sale notice triggered a 6 week moratorium for Intentions to Bid by a Parish Council or community group. This prompts Elston Parish Council, as the holder of the Asset of Community Value (ACV) and on behalf of the community, to submit a letter of Intention to Bid for The Chequers pub. This letter triggers the extended 6 month moratorium in which the pub cannot be sold, allowing time for the Steering Group to become a legal entity, to plan and fundraise in order to purchase the pub. Deadline for this: June 2018.

Successful application was submitted to Plunkett Foundation by the Steering Group to gain support. An expert advisor, Gordon Stewart, was appointed by Plunkett, to  guide us through the process of setting up as a Community Benefit Society, fundraising and potentially buying the Chequers.

New member added to Steering Group: Ann Sankey.


November 2017

Two Members of Steering Group attend *Plunkett Foundation Seminar (A foundation to “help rural communities work together to save what’s important to them”) regarding the process of purchasing The Chequers for the community.


October 2017

The Chequer’s planning application for change of use is withdrawn.


February 2017

The Chequers formally listed as a ACV.

‘The Hub’, the community’s temporary pub, is opened in Elston Village Hall. Open a few nights a week to help maintain the community spirit by offering a nice glass or two.


January 2017

Elston Parish Council and CAMRA applied to Newark and Sherwood DC to have The Chequers listed as an ACV.


December 2016

The owners of The Chequers, Elston, announced the pub would close as of 1 January 2017.

Public Meeting held in village hall in response to closure and application. Steering Group formed to offer solutions to enable the pub to continue and challenge the application for change of use. This group included: Jon Harris, Jim Sweeting, Charles Johnstone, David Pearson, Matt Dyer, Sue Dyer, Linda Fitzgerald, Sandra Wright and Faye Hemingway.

Village Campaign to save the pub is started in response to the Public Meeting.

Questionnaire delivered to Elston residents asking people for their views on the current closure, whether they currently use it, want to use it and whether they would be interested in getting involved with the community purchasing it and any further thoughts they had for the pub’s future.

Community story covered in Newark Advertiser.

Campaigners hoping to stop The Chequers Inn, Elston, being converted into a home.


November 2016

Application for change of use to Private Residence submitted to Newark and Sherwood DC.


August 2016

The Chequers, Elston, Nottinghamshire put up for sale.


*  Plunkett Foundation helps communities to take control of their challenges and overcome them through co-operation. We support people, predominantly in rural areas, to set up and run life-changing community co-operatives; enterprises that are owned and run democratically by large numbers of people in their community. They help people to tackle a range of issues such as isolationloneliness and poverty, and come in many forms including shops, cafes, pubs and land-based initiatives, and anything in between.