A DISUSED pub in Kirkby which is being targeted by thieves and arsonists has been labelled an ‘eyesore’ by residents.
In the latest incident, two fire engines were sent to a blaze at the Kingsway, on Kingsway, at around 2.30am on Saturday.
Six breathing apparatus kits and two hose reels were used and the fire was completely put out just after 4am.
Serious damage was caused to the bar area of the empty premises.
A spokesman from Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service said it is believed the fire was started deliberately. A police investigation is underway.
There have also been a number of break-ins since the premises was vacated around four weeks ago. The windows have been boarded up but the car park is still easily accessible.
Alan Garner, who lives opposite, thinks more should be done to deter thieves while the pub is closed.
He said: “I heard a rumour that there was a lot of scrap metal in there.
“The car park needs blocking off to stop vehicles being able to get in. On one occasion all the rubbish was emptied out of one of the wheelie bins and it was used to take stuff out of the pub.
“Since they put the guards on the windows it looks terrible and it’s a shame because this is a nice area.
“I’ve wrote a letter to the council to try and get something done about it quickly because it is an eyesore. I’m worried it will be closed long term because times are hard in the pub industry.”
Patrick Mould, who was the pub’s leaseholder for about 12 months, blamed tough trading conditions and high beer prices for the closure.
He said: “It’s a shame for the people of Kirkby because it could have been a really good community pub.”
Yesterday, an Ashfield District Council spokesman said she was aware of the situation - but confirmed no formal complaint had been received.
Anyone who sees anything suspicious at the Kingsway or has information about the fire on Saturday morning should call police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
The pub is owned by Scottish and Newcastle Pub Company, which us looking for a new landlord. For more information visit Scottish and Newcastle Pub Company.