Vital meeting is being held in a bid to save 18th-century Bristol pub
A VITAL meeting is being held this week in a bid to save one of the most historic pubs in the Bristol area from closure.
The 18th-century Lamplighters pub in Shirehampton closed its doors at the start of the year and has been left standing empty ever since.
Originally the owner, Enterprise Inns, promised to renovate and reopen the pub and said a new landlord would be moved in. But in May the building was put up for sale, prompting fears that it could be demolished to make way for flats or housing.
A campaign has been launched to save the pub and MP Charlotte Leslie is meeting bosses from Enterprise tomorrow in the hope it can be saved.
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The grade II riverside building has been put on the market for £400,000 and is described as offering "a variety of potential uses, subject to planning permission".
Ms Leslie said it would be a tragedy if the pub was lost for good to property developers and the Bristol North West Conservative MP is backing a campaign and petition organised by the local branch of the Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) to keep it open.
And she will be meeting managers from Enterprise in the hope that they will reverse the decision to sell it off.
She said: "Camra do fantastic work in supporting our beleaguered local pubs, and I am delighted we are joining forces.
"The historic Lamplighters pub is not only much needed and valued by the local community, but the pub, with its beautiful setting, new playground next door and great access, is also an almighty success story waiting to happen for anyone with the vision and capital to do it.
"It would be a travesty and a tragedy if what should be a jewel in the crown of Bristol pubs was snatched from the local community for the sake of a sale and a quick buck.
"I will be doing everything I can with Camra, Enterprise Inns and the local community to ensure that doesn't happen, and that the historic Lamplighters lives up to its name to become a "beacon" of Bristol's pubs."
Peter Bridle, from Camra, is leading the campaign to save the pub. He said: "The Lamplighters is no ordinary pub, it has massive potential.
"It is set in a fantastic location on the riverside in quiet surroundings within a minute's walk of the railway station and close to a park and ride bus service.
"The pub has extensive premises located over three storeys, a car park and a fantastic garden. I have no doubt that the pub can be a very successful and viable business serving the local community."
He added: "The pub needs to be maintained as there already appears to have been a few acts of vandalism against the building. We urge Enterprise Inns to act quickly as clearly there are many people in the local neighbourhood who are missing their local."
A petition set up by Ms Leslie can be found at www.savethelamplighterspub.bristolpetitions.com.