Popular Lancashire dining pubs saved by buyout

Derby Arms in Longridge

Derby Arms in Longridge - Credit: Kirsty Thompson

Five Lancashire dining pubs have been saved after a recent acquisition by a regional pub chain. 

The Alma Inn in Colne, The Derby Arms in Longridge,  The Farmers Arms in Great Eccleston, The Fenwick Arms in Claughton and The Forest Inn in Fence, were all part of the award-winning Seafood Pub Company which faced trading difficulty in during the lockdown in 2020. 

A deal to purchase the five Lancashire pubs along with  The Fleece Inn, Addingham, West Yorkshire has been agreed with Home Counties-based operator, The Oakman Group, in a move that will save around 150 jobs. 

Joycelyn with her Lancashire Life Food and Drink Awards trophies,

Joycelyn Neve with her Lancashire Life Food and Drink Awards trophies, - Credit: Kirsty Thompson

Joycelyn Neve, the founder and former MD of Seafood Pub Company and previous winner of numerous awards at the Lancashire Life Food and Drinks  Awards, will join The Oakman Group as the MD of this new division. 

Joycelyn Neve commented: “I have been a huge admirer of The Oakman Group, its ethos and its ambition. They have acquired the cream of the Seafood Pub Company sites and I’m confident that, with the Oakman team’s support, we will prove to be enormously successful. My expectation at this stage is that all six pubs will reopen on May 17th and we will immediately start work on putting our new teams together.” 

The popular walking pub, The Barley Mow, which lies at the foot of Pendle Hill and was also part the Seafood Pub Company, was recently bought by a consortium of locals and plans are in place to relaunch in the summer of 2021. 

The other pubs in that were part of the chain, the Assheton Arms in Downham and The Oyster and Otter in Feniscowles remain on the market.  

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