The Craufurd Arms Community Group grabbed the attention of judges after saving the last pub in North Maidenhead using the combined efforts of everyone down to the local residents all the way up to the Prime Minister. 

When the pub was threatened by closure the local community sprung to action to raise the required funds to purchase the pub off a guide price of £325,000. After securing the support of the local community through Residents Surveys, public meetings and press and social media engagement, the group turned to organisations like CAMRA, the Plunkett Foundation and Our Community Enterprise. 

Help then came in unlikely sources, including a generous contribution from Sir Robert and Lady Georgina Craufurd (after whose family the pub is named) and a letter of support from the Prime Minister. 

An incredible response to the share offer saw 229 local residents invest in the pub, allowing it to re-open in June as the 50th community-owned pub in the country. After just two months of operations the gross wet sales reached its 2020 forecast, and events including charity days and Real Ale and Cider Festivals have already taken place. 

Mark Newcombe Chairman of the Craufurd Arms Society Limited says: “With the help of our members and supporters the Craufurd Arms – our pint-sized community pub – has been able to thrive and prosper as a vital social and community hub and a profitable business. 

“The fact that we managed to raise the funds in such a short period of time is a testament to the incredible efforts of the committee, investors, supporters and CAMRA members.” 

The Craufurd Arms Community Group was pipped for the national title by campaigners in Kent who have saved a 200-year-old pub from closure in another inspiring example of community excellence. 

Paul Ainsworth who organises CAMRA’s Pub Saving Award says: “The Craufurd Arms Community Group should be recognised for the fantastic work that they have done to save their local pub from closure. Using every tool available to them and tapping into any and all channels – including the Prime Minister – this group is a great inspiration to communities across the country.”

Nicole Hamilton, Head of Frontline at Plunkett Foundation, said: “The Plunkett Foundation were delighted to be involved in judging the Pub Saving Award and encouraged to see so many strong applications from communities who actively campaigned to save their local pub. The Craufurd Arms, supported by the More than a Pub programme, is a shining example of what can be achieved and through a strong campaign have ensured their community pub business meets the wider needs of their community and members.”