A traditional 17th century pub will be closed for good this weekend due to ‘ongoing battles and the ever-changing nature of pubs’.
The landlord and landlady at The Oddfellows Arms, in Lower Street, Pulborough, have taken the decision to close the pub doors for the final time on Sunday (January 28).
Gary Bacon, who runs the pub alongside his Pulborough born and bred girlfriend Charlotte Catchpole, said: “Like a lot of other pubs that have struggled recently, we have been forced to close due to the lack of support.
“We had been playing it three months by three months before we finally decided that we would just sink if we carried on.
“We started to build the pub up and then as soon as we did that (our leaseholders) began putting our rent up through the roof to an unaffordable price.”
Gary and Charlotte took on the building two years ago in a bid to turn it into a village pub ‘that had been missing for such a long time’.
Gary added: “The people here have been so nice since we took over but we’ve got to a stage where we are just about breathing and decided to cut our losses.
“We care about the community and the village.
“Many people say it is the best pub they have been in for the past six, eight years and everyone is upset by the decision.
“It is a shame but we have to think about ourselves.”
The couple are now planning a trip to the south of France to put their feet up and put together some business plans.
However, before they close for good, they are hoping to thank the customers for their loyal support.
In a post to the pub’s Facebook page, the couple said: “We would like to thank all our wonderfully supportive customers and staff for standing by our side over the two lively years we have been here.
“The Pub will be open as normal for food and drink Friday, Saturday and Sunday so please come and join us for a farewell drink.”
Gary added: “Our customers have been great ever since we took over and our restaurant has done really well.
“We will miss it.”