London’s 'first community pub' in the black

By Liam Coleman contact

- Last updated on GMT

Profitable: Being at the heart of the community has been key to the site's success
Profitable: Being at the heart of the community has been key to the site's success
A site believed to be the first community pub in London, the Ivy House in Nunhead, is turning a profit for the first time since it came under community ownership.

Matt Soper from the pub’s steering committee said that the pub’s latest financial results show that it is making a profit for the first time since it was bought by a community co-operative in 2013. Soper said that after extensive research he believes the premises was the first community pub in London.

Classes and kids groups

He said: “You would imagine that a London pub, like us, would have business throughout the week, but that isn't always the case. Therefore, you need to make sure you're using it through the day for other stuff if you're not going to be turning a decent profit.”

“We have classes and groups for kids organised during the day, which means that we get parents coming in for coffee,” Soper told The Morning Advertiser​.

“It is quite a small profit, but is a nice corner to have turned,” he said and added that he felt the pub’s free-of-tie drink offer and balance of staff had been key to bringing the site into the black.

One of 70

Community ownership of pubs has become increasingly common, following the Localism Act 2011, which gave communities the right to list pubs as an Asset of Community Value (ACV). This means that if the pub comes up for sale the community has the opportunity to bid for it.

The latest estimate from the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) is that 70 UK pubs are under community ownership.

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