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Brighton congregation prays for pub's future
Members of Father John Wall’s congregation already pray each day for their daily bread.
But from next year Father Wall is also hoping to serve them their daily red – courtesy of a new church-backed community pub.
The Bevendean, or Bevvy, in Moulsecoomb was closed by police following a string of violent incidents in 2010.
But residents in both Moulsecoomb and Bevendean are working together to try to reopen the once troubled boozer as a community owned pub.
They have announced that they will sell £10 shares in the venture from December 1 with the hope of reaching the required £200,000.
Leading the campaign to get the beers flowing at the venue in Hillside is none other than the local vicar.
Father Wall, of St Andrew’s in Moulsecoomb, said: “Every good community deserves a good church and a good pub.
“St Andrew’s is doing its bit in Moulsecoomb but we have no local pub.”
In a message to his congregation he added: “As a church, we’ve been supportive from the word go. I suspect we could be unique in the diocese as having support for the local pub enshrined in our Church Mission Action Plan.
“It’s been really amazing to see what can be achieved by a group of local people with a real sense of purpose and vision.
“I can’t wait for the new year and the re-opening of the Bevvy. Whoever gets to the bar first, mine’s a pint of Bishop’s Finger.”
With a combined population of 18,000, the Moulsecoomb, Bevendean and Bates estates are thought to be one of the most populated areas in the county without a local.
The focus for the new boozer will be on local food and ale at affordable prices.
There are also plans for a community kitchen and even an edible beer garden.
If all goes to plan, it is thought it will be the first co-operative pub and on a housing estate in the UK.
Father Wall said: “The building was under real threat of being lost to the community but a small group of local people got together in the church hall and started the ball rolling to get our pub back.
“We will be the first urban co-operative pub in the South of England. It’ll be a community hub, offer a relaxed family friendly venue, good food, meeting rooms and even an orchard and an edible garden.”
All are invited to the December 1 share sales launch which will feature music, mulled wine, nibbles and local Langham Brewery real ale.
The evening starts at 6pm at St Andrew’s Church.
For details visit www.thebevy.co.uk.
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