>The Mill Wheel in Billing Brook: The former landlord of a Northampton pub branded a hotspot for drug-dealing has criticised members of the community for failing to support him in his efforts to transform the venue.
Paramount Investments, which is trying to sell the Mill Wheel pub, in Billing Brook Road, described it as having “a history of violence” and has lowered its leasehold price to only £150,000 to try to attract a new landlord.
But the previous landlord said the Mill Wheel had picked up an unfair reputation as it was situated in a run-down area of Lings where drug dealers were hanging about outside.
Thomas Smyth, who ran the venue for four years, said: “The people who were causing problems were barred from the pub, and I did everything I possibly could to make sure there was no drug dealing or any violence inside. “When we took over the Mill Wheel, we made it perfectly clear it wouldn’t be tolerated.
“The problems were all outside, and we regularly had to call the police to try to get them to do something about it, but they never showed up in time. “There weren’t any police raids in the four years I was there.”We worked really hard to make the pub a great place for the community.
We set up two pool leagues and two football teams, and the pub had a really good atmosphere inside.”But we never had any support from the community or from the brewery, who said they were going to improve the outside but never did.
“Brookside Residents’ Council didn’t want a pub there at all and they have wanted to close it down since day one.”The Chronicle & Echo reported on Thursday that interest in re-opening the venue and restoring it to its previous use had been received by the current agents, but the news was not welcomed by residents or ward councillors.
But Stephen Candeler, the manager of Mill Wheel Football Club, leapt to its defence, and said: “The pub was a brilliant place to go.”I’ve been drinking there since 1989 and there was never any problems inside, it was all down to the gangs who hang around in the car parks, by the shops and by the community centre.”If we’d had more support to clean up the whole area there wouldn’t be an issue, and it’s not fair just to blame the pub.”
>AS one vacant pub re-opens licensed property agents acting for another Huddersfield local say it may never serve beer again.
The Junction Pub on Manchester Road, Crosland Moor, may have a future – but not as a pub.
Estate agents acting for the property say they haven’t received any interest from other landlords and it now looks like the pub will close.
Mark Greig, managing director of London-based licensed property company, Paramount Investments, said: “As no publican or pub company has stepped forward to save The Junction, it may cease to be a pub at all.”
Mr Greig said there had been an increase in the sales of pubs as entrepreneurs, developers and community groups took advantage of rock bottom prices.
Anyone interested in The Junction should visit http://www.paramount-investments.co.uk