Closed town centre pub goes up for sale

Councillor Jan French launched an appeal on social media for ideas to turn the empty Georges pub in March High Street into a community asset. Now it is for sale for offers in the region of £295,000

Councillor Jan French launched an appeal on social media for ideas to turn the empty Georges pub in March High Street into a community asset. Now it is for sale for offers in the region of £295,000 - Credit: Archant

Georges public house in March – subtly described as ‘in need of refurbishment’ - is up for sale for just under £300,000. 

Agents handling the sale point out that “no trade is sold or warranted. Historic trade accounts are unavailable”. 

And they advise that “prospective purchasers must make their own assumptions as to likely trade levels”. 

In the summer a bid to retain and re-develop Georges was put forward by former mayor Jan French. 

As the area communities champion for the county council, Cllr French believes the pub – once the George and dating back hundreds of years- is “too important a feature of our town to lose”. 


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Accepting that it is unlikely to be restored anytime soon as a public house, she wants to look at alternative uses that could see it transformed into a vibrant centre for the community. 

Until, or unless, that happens it has been listed as being for sale with offers invited in the region of £295,00. 

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Key features suggested by the agents include a commercial kitchen with main bar, snug and a games room. 

The property is being sold freehold and include includes a 2-bedroom private flat, upstairs one bedroom owners' accommodation, and a ground floor cellar. 

“Please note the property is in need of refurbishment,” say the agents. 

"The property most recently operated under lease as a multi-faceted family run pub & restaurant. 

“It offered traditional home cooked foods, fresh ground coffee, real ales as well as live music & various community events, the venue also hosted business meetings, weddings, christenings and wakes.” 
Nigel Marsh, who ran Georges for eight years until last year, said he had loved running it “and I will miss the many, many personalities that made Georges a community pub”. 

Shortly after taking over in 2011 police got involved in a dispute over control of the pub and as Mr Marsh went to take over, they forcibly stopped and arrested him. He was subsequently cleared and later received an apology and compensation. 

He said: "I have laughed, cried, listened, been agony aunt, mourned and loved Georges and Georges' people," he said. 

Former publican Nigel Marsh. He ran Georges for eight years until last year when he left to run holiday homes in Norfolk. 

Former publican Nigel Marsh. He ran Georges for eight years until last year when he left to run holiday homes in Norfolk. - Credit: Archant

Mr Marsh said it seemed to be an ongoing fight throughout his time at the pub with "battles of: eviction, arrest, re-arrest, application to remove my license, FDC health and safety, electrical notices, noise safety notices, planning validation notices, DPPO violation, battles with the Summer Festival, Battles with St Georges Fayre committee and food safety risk scores. 

"These were just a few battles I fought on a regular basis, many of them carrying financial and possible imprisonment risks. Trying to run a business in March is simply too much of an uphill struggle." 

He said the financial risks to a publican from the authorities, from the police, from the council and physical risks from individuals in the high street "were too great, I'm told by my children and they are probably right". 

Sidney Phillips are the agents for the sale: you can contact them on 01522 500059 


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