PLANS to convert a disused café in Stroud High Street into a bar have been welcomed.

Earlier this year an alcohol licence application was made to Stroud District Council for the unit at 62 High Street, Stroud - the former Socialight café, which shut in 2019. 

The new venture is called Town Owl Taphouse – whose name is taken from a poem by Laurie Lee – and plans to provide mainly local craft beers, as well as cider, alcohol free beer and catering for all with some select wines and spirits.

Owner Adam Pilmer, who is from Cambridge and now lives in Avening with his wife Celia, says they aim to open the business within the next few weeks. 

Stroud News and Journal:

The bar opens at 12pm between Wednesday and Sunday with closing times varying - 10.30pm on a Wednesday and Thursday, 11pm on a Friday and Saturday plus 8pm on a Sunday. 

Mr Pilmer said: “I have always wanted to open my own bar.

“We want to bring craft beer to Stroud and try to help rejuvenate the town centre.

“It’s also nice to help supply products from independent businesses.

“We are also very happy for people to bring in food from local outlets at the market or town centre and eat them inside here.”

This new business venture has been welcomed by Tony Davey, chair of Stroud chamber of trade.

He said: “It’s good to see that this well positioned unit, that has been empty for a long time, is to be put back into use.

“A good mix of businesses in our streets is important for their survival, with our high streets evolving to serve the changing needs of those who use them.

“The Town Owl Taphouse has advertised they will be selling craft beers, spirits and wines, with some products sourced from across the South West - which sounds like a very good fit for Stroud. 

“As with many towns in our district, our nighttime economy is not as strong as it could be.

“When managed well, having more businesses that are open in the evenings and nighttime not only brings robust business opportunities, it can also increase town safety.”