A 300 year old pub in Minchinhampton could soon have a new owner: the community.

A group of locals are clubbing together in an effort to buy the Crown Inn, which closed in 2012.

They’re hoping they can replicate people powered success seen elsewhere, such as the Packhorse Inn in South Stoke where villagers raised £1 million to keep it from developers.

Current Crown owner Ei Group wants to sell the pub and, thanks to the 2011 Localism Act, this has triggered a six month window where locals can put in a bid first.

Minchinhampton Crown Inn Ltd - the locals’ newly set-up company- is offering up to 12,000 shares priced at £100 each to those living in the town to cover the cost of purchasing and restoring the pub.

The actual day-to-day running of the Crown will be handled by an operator who will be accountable to those in the town who bought shares.

Simon Witney, who is a director of MCI Ltd, says there is a “huge latent demand” for a community-owned pub.

“There used to be as many as 58 pubs and beer houses in the town,” he explains, “and buying the Crown in this way will be essential for revitalising Minchinhampton.”

Simon, who is himself an environment and development consultant, thinks the expertise of MCI Ltd’s board, which includes backgrounds in finance and copy-writing, together with the selling point of a pub run by the community, will save the Crown.

They’ve already set up a poll on Facebook for people to vote on what facilities should be available in the pub.

MCI Ltd have given themselves until May 26 to decide whether they’ve gotten enough cash.

They’re launching their digital campaign today and will shortly be posting 2000 leaflets through letterboxes in the town.

Visit minchinhampton.pub for more info.