Campaigners vow to never stop fighting for Southsea pub

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MEMBERS of a community group hoping to safeguard the futureThe Eldon Arms say they will not give up with the battle.

The Eldon Arms Community Preservation Society – known as Teacups – was hoping to make the pub as an Asset of Community Value. But the bid failed.

Portsmouth City Council clearly do not view pubs as an important community asset.

Roger Addy, campaigner

If the pub in Eldon Street, which is open, had been given ACV status by Portsmouth City Council, it would have become the first of its kind in the city.

The status means that if the pub goes up for sale, the group would be entitled to submit a bid, starting up a six-month moratorium for supporters to raise the necessary funding.

Roger Addy is one of the campaigners.

He believes the reason why the campaign failed is that there are so many pubs in the local area.

He said: ‘In their report they named numerous pubs, including the Deco at the far end of Elm Grove, about 0.6 miles from the Eldon.

‘Taking this to an extreme, it would mean that virtually no pub would qualify for an ACV, because there would always be other pubs in the local area.’

Roger is concerned that Portsmouth City Council is focusing on a trend towards only having national chain pubs in the city.

He explained: ‘The council clearly does not view pubs as important community assets and will not until a great many more have been run down by their owners and closed such that they become a rarity or only located in the central areas.

‘It seems to be quite happy for local community pubs to be closed and converted into housing, as this helps them meet their housing targets.’