South Cave's Fox and Coney pub closes doors
FAMILIES in South Cave are disheartened by the closure of their village pub.
The Fox and Coney Inn shut its doors after its landlord failed to turn a profit.
This is the fourth time in nine years a leaseholder of the pub has abandoned their contract with landlords Enterprise Inns.
Villagers believe community spirit is being hampered by ever-changing tenants at the pub.
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Carl Barnett, manager of village football team South Cave United, said: "It's a real shame for us as that's where we meet after a game.
"The focal point of the village has been taken away and it's detrimental to the community as a whole."
Former landlord Vincent Garcia was forced to close the pub on Monday, September 17.
He claimed it was suffering significant losses.
Mr Garcia, 53, feels the pub is unsustainable.
He said: "High rent and expensive beer make it almost impossible to make the place succeed."
With about 3,000 premises around the country, Enterprise Inns is one of the UK's largest pub companies.
It sells leases to publicans and charges rent on the properties they occupy.
Mr Garcia said: "The rent has more than doubled in the two-and-a-half years I've had the place."
Licensees are restricted to buying alcohol from Enterprise and Mr Garcia believes their prices are too high.
He said: "They charge you an arm and a leg for alcohol.
"After knocking off wages, bills and tax, I was making next to nothing on drink."
He accepts the business was stifled by the economic climate but feels his contractors have done little to help.
Alan Canvess, chairman of Hull and East Riding's Campaign for Real Ale, believes it is a dark era for the British pub.
He said: "Today, landlords come and go so quickly.
"They are lured in with cheap rent deals but then – when the rents go back to normal – they discover they can't make a living and they're out of the door.
"I think big companies look at pubs simply as bricks, mortar and land they can sell for development."
The British Beer and Pub Association said 30 pubs are closing each week.
Enterprise Inns said it intends to reopen the Fox and Coney Inn, which employs more than 20 South Cave villagers, as soon as possible.