Roof repairs start at Wellesbourne pub after blaze
WORK is now under way on rebuilding the Stags Head pub in Wellesbourne, seven months after its roof was destroyed by fire.
The 17th-century, Grade II-listed building caught fire just before 1am on Monday, 11th October 2021. The thatched roof caught fire and flames quickly spread through the premises, but luckily those inside were able to escape.
Seven fire appliances took five hours to extinguish the blaze.
The Wellesbourne community quickly rallied round, raising more than £6,000 to provide financial support to the owners and staff affected by the fire.
Building work began earler this month by Leamington-based restoration specialists Castle Brothers.
The pub’s Stuart Jackson told the Herald: “They’ve started to work on replacing the timber framing, which is wonderful to see.
“Obviously it’s Grade II-listed, so whatever we can retain we have to, and they’re doing an amazing job on that. You can see that they’re absolute craftsmen and how they’re working is just superb.
“Handworking with those tools on the heavy wood frame is just amazing to watch. You’ve got to be in awe of people like that. You’ve got this massive piece of green oak, and because they’re working by hand, there’s just a small wrap of chisels and a big mallet. It’s fantastic to see.”
While the Stags Head begins its road to recovery, three other pubs in Stratford district that have been ravaged by fire in the past year are finding their feet more slowly.
The Three Tuns in Alcester, which caught fire on Saturday, 17th April 2021, remained derelict, open to the elements and surrounded by scaffolding for a whole year, leading to 475 residents signing a petition organised by Cllr Susan Juned (Alcester Town, Liberal Democrats).
The petition, presented to the district council on Monday, called for the council to help with a timetable that ensured the Grade II-listed building was restored, and to consider formal action if progress is not made.
The Herald understands that work began this week.
A third recent fire saw the Crabmill in Preston Bagot go up in flames on the morning of 28th February. At the time a spokesperson for the pub’s owners, Brunning and Price, said: “The Crabmill will be closed for the foreseeable future whilst a restoration and refurbishment plan is organised.”
The fourth fire-hit pub was The Churchill Arms in Paxford, which suffered widespread damage in the early hours of 14th March, with one chef making an escape as the fire took hold. Chef-owner Nick Deverell-Smith said this week: “I have no comment at this time, but I will be making a press release when I am ready to share my plans going forward.”