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Rural pubs

There are many excellent public houses in the East Riding but many are also currently facing challenging trading times. Find information for communities interested in taking over their village pub.

Why are our rural pubs important?

Rural pubs are part of the fabric of our rural life, and make a valuable contribution to the East Riding economy. The 341 public houses in the Rural East Riding directly employ over 3400 people in either a full time or part time capacity and indirectly support the employment of approximately 900 people through the purchase of supplies and services. These pubs typically host a variety of local community events, and can be home to valued services and amenities e.g. shops, book swaps and pensioners lunches. 

However, pubs in both rural and urban areas continue to face challenging times with an average of 25 pub closures recorded nationally each week and it is vital that they are supported to develop sustainable business models.

Could my community take over the local pub?

Yes, a number of communities across the country have already successfully taken over their local pub when the opportunity became available. There is a lot of work involved, but the number of community-owned or community-operated pubs is increasing nationally. A number of different models of community ownership or management are possible, and communities do not have to get involved in the day-to-day running of the pub if they do not want to.

If your community is interested in exploring community ownership or management further, please contact the rural policy and partnerships team.

Further information is also available from specialist organisations, including the 'Pub is the Hub' initiative, which can provide additional support and professional guidance to your community.

Pub is the Hub (external website)

What business support is available for my pub?

The council's business services team has a number of advisors who are able to offer support and advice to businesses across the East Riding. This information can be found on the business advice page.

The national ‘Pub is the Hub’ initiative can provide support and advice for publicans who wish to consider diversifying their businesses by providing additional community services (eg. shop, post office, library) at their pubs.  

The council is working in partnership with the ‘Pub is the Hub’ to support local licensees wishing to get involved in the initiative through a series of workshops to be held in 2013 at which industry specialists and council officers will be on hand to help develop projects suited to the individual business and locality.

For further information please fill in the enquiries form.

Further information is also available on the 'Pub is the Hub' website:

Pub is the Hub (external website)

Yorkshire Passion is a free half-day service quality training programme designed for any businesses or individuals who have contact with customers or visitors in the East Riding.  For further information, and to find out the dates of future courses, please see the Yorkshire passion website:

Yorkshire passion - courses (external website)


Publicans may also wish to consider becoming members of the East Yorkshire Local Food Network. You can view further information about the work of the network, and the benefits of using local produce on the East Yorkshire Local Food Network (EYLFN) page.

Where can I find out more about licensing law?

The council's licensing team will be able to provide further information. You can get further information on the premises licences page