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Welsh community-run pub group to create cultural centre

By Helen Gilbert , 14-Jan-2013
Last updated on 14-Jan-2013 at 10:06 GMT2013-01-14T10:06:12Z

The Saith Seren: manager Amanda Hughes stands outside the venue

The Saith Seren: manager Amanda Hughes stands outside the venue

A group of residents in Wrexham is hoping to raise £40,000 to create a Welsh cultural centre at a Grade II listed 19th century pub.

The co-operative is offering shares from £100 in the Y Saith Seren (the Seven Stars) pub, which re-opened its doors as a co-operative last January.

The pub, which celebrates Welsh culture by sourcing its produce locally including Wrexham lager, will see its first floor refurbished and turned into a centre for the community.

Marc Jones, chair of the community-owned co-operative known as Canolfan Gymraeg Wrecsam Cyfyngedig (CCWC), described the Seven Stars as a landmark building.

“It is great to see it back in use, illustrating what can be achieved when communities work together,” he said.

“It [the coop] will continue the work to transform the building into a centre for the community by offering music, poetry and film alongside meeting rooms, office space and community facilities to promote Welsh language and culture.”

The Co-operative Group – the UK’s largest member-owned organisation with seven million members - has pledged a further £1m over 2013 to developing The Co-operative Enterprise Hub.

Michael Fairclough, the Co-operative’s head of community and co-operative investment described a well run pub as being an ‘important part of the social fabric of a community’.

“Enterprises such as this - operated by a general public concerned for community cohesion, accountability, transparency, and sustainability - are showing how by working together, they can tackle some of the unprecedented challenges currently facing our society, environment and economy,” he said.