04:05PM, Thursday 20 June 2019
Willie Calvert, of the Windsor and Eton Brewery, at the latest community barbeque event at The Swan in Clewer
A pub in Clewer which has been closed for more than three years has announced its reopening date after being taken over by the community.
The team behind saving The Swan, in Mill Lane, announced earlier this month that it hopes to open for business over the weekend of Saturday, July 20 this year.
The pub was put up for sale in April 2018, prompting a group of residents to set up The Swan Clewer Community Interest Company to rescue it and turn it into a community hub.
The group obtained the keys earlier this year after having a mortgage accepted.
‘Team Swan’ held the second of its community events on June 8 through another of its barbeques, which gave an opportunity for people to see the progress being made.
This was one of the last chances for future customers to take a tour inside the building and see areas that will not be accessible to the public once the pub is operating.
In addition to beer, burgers and dancing, there was also a quiz to see who knew the most about Clewer through the ages – from cave dwellers to Oscar winning actors.
More than 200 people attended the event, which raised £2,000, with all proceeds going towards the cost of pub renovations.
Newly-appointed general manager Matthew Baker was also there.
Willie Calvert, of the Windsor and Eton Brewery, has been a key driving force behind the rescue.
He said of the fundraising barbecue: “To see a little pub like that get 250 people turn up just to buy a burger is fantastic.”
He added: “It is necessary to get the pub open as soon as possible.
“We are going to open it really before it is ready. It is going to be a hive of activity.
“The scaffolding will still be up, but we are determined to set a date.
“The project has taken longer than we planned, but it is a more thorough job.
“We are going to [work out] what we have spent in order to get the pub open, and the next phase after that is going to be refurbishing the kitchen.”
Work is taking place in stages, with the initial opening focusing on the main bar and facilities for the students of The Green Room School, based in Windsor.
The Swan will become a key location for the graduate program being developed by the Albert Street school for its older students, providing those with additional needs a safe environment to transition into the world of work.
Other stages such as the kitchens and bed and breakfast rooms will follow later.
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