Pointon pub owners step in to save condemned clubhouse, but offer sparks protest
The owners of a village pub have offered to save a condemned community sports facility despite protests from a group of villagers.
Aliro, which runs the Old Ship Inn pub in Pointon, want to repair and run the clubhouse on the village's playing field.
It was closed last July after concerns raised by a health and safety inspection, and a month later, Pointon Sports and Social Club, which ran the site, was wound up.
The building houses changing rooms, showers and toilets and is used by local football teams.
"We have been encouraged by the current football teams who use the pub, as well as local residents, to volunteer to save Pointon Sports and Social Club," said Aliro director Clive Burt.
"Several generations of local people have used and enjoyed the playing field and its amenities over many years and want to keep this facility for the future
"We want to help the village keep this club going as an asset to the local area and hope we will receive support from the close community."
Aliro, which has refurbished the Ship Inn's front bar during lockdown, say they will use local tradesmen and volunteers to carry out the work.
They are set to sign a three-year lease with site owners Pointon and Sempringham Parish Council, but a group of villagers have opposed the plan.
They believe the decision to award the lease should be delayed until after May's parish council elections.
The parish council has been left with just two members after a row over a separate issue prompted four resignations.
Aveland ward councillor, Peter Moseley, was asked to join as chairman to avoid South Kesteven District Council stepping in and taking over jurisdiction for the parish until May.
He said concerns the lease was being awarded without approval from a full parish council were misplaced.
"A fully-elected council passed the motions and approved the issuing of the lease before the resignations so we are only carrying out a motion that was approved by the council previously," he said.
“A lease for three years is not a lease for life."
Coun Moseley, who is also an SKDC cabinet member for Commercial and Operations, added: "The pavilion is quite run down and a health and safety report condemned it.
“We have looked at the costs of repairing it and would be between £15,000 and £20,000.
“A local businessman agreed to take it on and run it as a going concern in exchange for a peppercorn rent.
“As a cabinet member, one of the things I always look for is value for money, and this seems to be incredible value for money for the people of Pointon."