A steering group targeting the takeover of a village pub say they are delighted with the response of residents after a public meeting.

Around 70 people attended the meeting at Ash Village Hall at the end of last month to view a presentation given by Judith Griffin, who is chair of the steering group to save the White Lion.

Alison Mair, who is also part of the steering group, says the night had an anxious start, but the response has given them hope of achieving their target.

“I have to be honest with you, ten minutes before the meeting was due to start there were 11 of us in the Hall and six of those were Steering Group Members,” she said.

“The floodgates then opened and we were very soon pulling out extra chairs. We had close to 70 residents come out to hear about the opportunity we have to save he White Lion Ash and allow the community to continue to enjoy the benefits of having such a wonderful facility in the village.

“As you would expect there were lots of questions afterwards that were fielded by a number of the Steering group with John Dodd and Leigh Griffin offering explanations on the tax benefits of investing, how the business plan would be put together and how ultimately a management committee would be appointed.

“It was made clear that anyone within the community who felt they had the skills needed to help with the purchase, refurb and ultimately running of the pub would be very much welcomed to help to take the project forward.

“Someone with computer skills, social media expertise and legal knowledge could offer valuable assistance at this early stage of the project to ensure success in our aim to save the pub for future generations.

“The evening ended with the majority of attendees having an informal chat in the White Lion.

“The atmosphere was extremely buoyant and the whole of the Steering Group were delighted at the response at this early stage of the proceedings. By Friday morning we had received pledges of £23,000, this figure is rising all the time.”

Anyone looking to support the group can contact allisonmair@safetyfordesign.co.uk or judithgriffin@btinternet.com