Over the last year the board of Ballantrae Trust have invested a great deal of time and effort in a project to save The Kings Arms pub for the community and to guarantee its future as a community resource whilst at the same time preserving its identity as a pub. In order to purchase the business, the board applied for funding to the Scottish Land Fund, Ballantrae Community Fund and Carrick Futures. We were successful in securing most of the funding for which we applied and this enabled us to move forward with negotiations with the previous owners. Several weeks ago an offer made by the board was accepted and as a result the purchase was able to go ahead. As with any such business transaction, there were lots of legal considerations which had to be dealt with in advance of it being concluded which become heightened when public funds are involved.
We, the board of Ballantrae Trust are happy to inform you that the transfer of the business was finally concluded on Tuesday 22nd September. We would like to thank the previous owners, Brian and Suzanne, their family and staff for their assistance over this time. This means that Ballantrae Trust and therefore the community are now the owners of The Kings Arms which we hope will ensure its continued role as a community resource at the heart of village life.
Further to this, in the near future we hope to open the building for use whilst at the same time meeting the COVID-19 restrictions which are in place at the time. This is very much dependent on us having the appropriate settings and processes in place. Some of you may be aware that we have held a couple of ‘test events’ to assess the situation and to test our processes. In light of these events, further work was carried out to ensure the safe and compliant reopening of the building. Currently The Scottish Government has restrictions in place in the Ayrshire and Arran health board area which prevents licenced premises from opening.
In the coming weeks it is the intention of the board to form a Community Benefit Society which will thereafter run the day to day operations of the pub element of the building. Members of the community will be able to buy shares in the Society and to stand for election to the management committee. Details of Community Benefit Society and the share offer will be circulated very soon.
Further updates will be issued to keep you up to date with progress and also with respect to when we are able to open.
The board would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their support. It’s now that the hard work really starts and so we would also like to extend an invitation to anyone willing to volunteer to help out with the upcoming work required to get The Kings Arms up and running. We will be looking for those with specific skills at certain times, but also those who are prepared to give a few hours of their time to help out. Any members who are able to offer assistance should contact the trust via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or speak to a board member.