Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Saturday, 2 March 2013
Buy The Bell!
My local is up for sale, but the current owner and landlord is altruistic enough to have given the local community the option of buying and running it, rather than taking the first - or highest - offer, so that the place can be run with the same staff and the same ambience it has been since he bought it about 24 years ago.
The Bell has been put onto the market as a community share offer, and this means that the £575,000 target (the remainder being covered by a bank loan) can only be reached by subscriptions of between £500 (minimum) and £20,000 (maximum) - one pound per share, and one vote (at AGMs) per subscription.
You do not need to be a local resident to invest in the place and retain it as the community asset which it already is, and because The Bell is internationally renowned as a venue for live music, it attracts visitors from all over G.B. and beyond.
The Board (as henceforth they shall be referred to!) are offering 3% interest on the first year, and 5% thereafter, for a minimum of 3 years before withdrawal - if you need to withdraw. Not only that, but the 150 year-old community share scheme template has been tied in with a recent government incentive to help small businesses by allowing a 30% tax relief for the first year - read the small print, but this is a very attractive offer for most tax-payers.
As far as I can see, any UK resident can own a part of The Bell, so why not click on the link below to see if you want to get involved in maintaining the best pub in Bath, and one of the oldest continuously running coaching inns in the West Country, as well as saving more money than you would with your ISA schemes?
I will personally buy a drink for anyone who walks into The Bell with the intention of buying some shares and keeping the place out of the hands of the big, industrial breweries and property developers.
Just walk up to the bar and ask for Tom Stephenson - they won't have a clue who you are talking about.