The Charlton Society has launched a petition to try to help secure the future of The White Swan pub amid fears for the future of its parent company, Punch Taverns.
The petition asks Greenwich Council to declare the Swan an asset of community value.
If the council approves, it would mean that if the building is put up for sale, then there would be a six-month pause on the sale to enable the community to put together a bid to buy it. To avoid this, the building would have to be sold as a going concern.
While the pub is not under any immediate threat, it was closed for a spell late last year with Punch Taverns’ rent demands casting long-term worries about its future. But Punch itself, which also owns the Bugle Horn, is deeply in debt, with the future of the whole business in the balance.
So the petition’s aimed at making it harder for any future owner of the business to try to sell the building for redevelopment, and to try to ensure that it’s kept in business as a pub.
At the moment, there’s signs of optimism – a 164-strong Facebook group has organised a number of meet-ups in the pub – and there’s a manager in charge who’s interested in developing the business.
While the Charlton Society can ask the council to declare the Swan an asset of community value on its own, proof of interest in the community will help. So sign up, and let’s help try to get the Swan’s future sorted.