Campaigners have been formed to save Britain’s most remote pub (accessible only via a 18-mile hike or boat trip) from being converted into housing.
Old Forge Community Benefit Society, (CBS), is looking to buy its pub in order to ensure its continued existence for local residents.
The group was launched when the Old Forge, at Inverie on the Knoydart peninsula, was put on the market for offers over £425,000 by its Belgian owner in January.
Nearby residents have joined a community buy fundraiser for the Old Forge Inn, Knoydart’s west coast pub. The group was launched when the Old Forge, at Inverie on the Knoydart peninsula, was put on the market for offers over £425,000 by its Belgian owner in January
The community purchased the 17500-acre Knoydart Estate in 1999.
It was built in 1880 and is a single-story cottage-style, white-washed property. The slate roof makes it stand out in Guinness Book of World Records.
You can only reach the pub by boat or helicopter from Mallaig.
Fears that the house could be purchased and converted into housing led to an urgency call for its rescue by residents in January.
After smashing their fundraising target of £40,000 within hours, the Old Forge CBS now has everything in place for the acquisition and redevelopment of the pub.
Stephanie Harris, group secretary said that the building needs a lot more work to be open. The crowdfund campaign was therefore the final piece in our fundraising strategy.
“We had hoped for a lot of support. But that was not the case.
“It means we have the ability to use all of what we’ve saved on top our initial target, and continue refurbishing and making it more enjoyable and comfortable for everyone.
It is only possible to reach the pub above by boat, or over 18-miles of mountains.
On December 18, 555 supporters pledged their support and the crowdfunding campaign was closed. A total of £66,446 was raised on top of funds already secured to push the project over the line
On December 18, 555 supporters pledged their support for the crowdfunding campaign. A total of £66,446 was raised on top of funds already secured to push the project over the line.
It came as a further cash boost to the £500,000-grant from the Scottish Land Fund and another £219,000 from the UK Government’s Community Ownership Fund.
After the sale is completed, the majority of the extra money will go towards redeveloping the pub. This includes repairs to the back and toilets.
It plans to inscribe the names of those who pledged funds to purchase a timber bar-top as part of the upgrade.
Ms Harris stated that she wanted people to have the chance to give their mark on the project. This would not be possible without support both from the local community and those outside it.
Pictured: The Old Forge Inn’s location on a map. It has always been popular with locals and tourists, even though it was named ‘the most remote pub in mainland Britain’ by Guinness Book of World Records.
Jean-Pierre Robinet is the current seller of The Old Forge CBS. He hopes to seal the deal before the end month, so the pub could open in the new year.
This pub, which was built in 1880 as a blacksmith’s workshop, has been the heart of UK outdoor recreation for over a century.
It has always been popular with locals and tourists, even though it was declared “the most remote pub in mainland Britain” by Guinness Book of World Records.
The Old Forge, which is owned by the community, would remain open all year and provide employment for 15-20 people during the tourist season. Local produce will be used to support local businesses.
Ms Harris stated that she was in talks with the seller. She hopes that this will allow them to move it forward and make the transaction as quick as possible.
“We’d love to know by the end the year that it’s available, so we can begin to prepare to open it next season.”