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Inside the disused pub due to reopen after four years with new owners and new name

These photos show the rundown interior of a pub that's set to soon be given a makeover and reopened to customers.

It's been four years since any customers were served in The Acton Arms
It's been four years since any customers were served in The Acton Arms

The Acton Arms, which sits on the A458 in Morville, just outside Bridgnorth, has been closed for around four years. However, it's set to reopen within the coming months after Landywood Estates and Darwyn Homes Ltd teamed up to buy the site.

The move is set to lead to the reopening of the pub and the construction of three houses behind it.

Outline planning permission for the scheme to build the trio of five-bed houses was given last year, but the full application is set to be submitted to Shropshire Council in the coming weeks.

The Acton Arms is now fenced off ahead of work starting later this winter

As part of the scheme, the pub will reopen and be run by the team which operates The Malt at Landywood at Cheslyn Hay, Walsall. It will also receive a new name, becoming The Acton at Morville. Darwyn Homes Ltd will build the houses behind.

Work on tidying up the venue is expected to start within the coming weeks. Already a concrete block at the entrance to the car park and an abandoned caravan parked in the corner have been moved, while it's hoped diggers will arrive before the end of the year to start clearing the other debris from the car park.

However, more work is needed to improve the interior of the pub which hasn't welcomed any customers for several years.

Chairs and tables are still in place inside the pub

Josh Cartlidge, co-owner of The Malt at Landywood, and now The Acton Arms, has outlined some of the work that will take place.

"We are aiming to start work in December/January time on the work to get it open for March," he said. "We want it to be like The Malt, which is all fresh (food) and prepared on-site."

The Acton at Morville will have a focus on food, serving meals from breakfast through to evening dinners with the idea of people enjoying a drink alongside their food "rather than power drinking". It will also be a pub that doesn't show football, like The Malt at Landywood which isn't even running the World Cup.

Dust and dirt have built up in the pub over recent years

Other work due to take place before reopening will be a repaint of the pub's exterior, as well as refurbishing window surrounds and making other repairs to the roof and guttering. The interior will also be upgraded ahead of the first customers arriving in spring 2023.

Exact opening times are yet to be confirmed, however bosses are looking at an 11pm closing time with potentially some slightly longer hours on Fridays and Saturdays.

"We are really excited," added Josh. "We think we have got a great venue and location."

The refurbished pub is due to reopen in spring 2023

Another ambition is to install a wood-fired pizza oven, if planning permission is granted.

When outline permission was granted in 2021, the plans received backing from the local community with no objections listed.

Josh said that since buying the site, people have been happy to hear that the pub is set to reopen.

"So many people have asked about it and are happy it will be opening," he added.

Three houses are planned for land behind the pub

The new owners also plan to get to know the area, which could help tweak their plans on what they serve at the pub.

In the longer run, an extension with pagodas could also be built out the back, with an orangery also mooted, after a small area was secured when Darwyn Homes Ltd bought the land earmarked for the new houses.

New windows are also planned, while other long term plans include refurbishing the bedrooms for guests to stay in and a new oak porch.

The revamped pub will also lead to the creation of around 25 jobs, with the first roles being advertised early next year.

Access will be through the pub car park. Image: Darwyn Homes Ltd

Out the back, a dividing wall for fence is planned to help separate the pub from the proposed homes. Access to the three houses will be through the car park, with a separate surface planned to make the route to them clear.

Darwyn Homes Ltd has released draft images of the proposed homes, subject to planning permission being granted. Currently the land they're destined to go on is overgrown and needs clearing before construction work can start.

An architect's draft image showing what the new houses planned for land behind The Acton Arms would look like, subject to planning permission. Image: Darwyn Homes Ltd
Three houses are planned for the site. Image: Darwyn Homes Ltd

They show three five-bedroom houses - with one designed to be a study for people working from home - with driveways and integral garage, as well as giving an impression of how the homes will be separated from the pub and accessed through the car park.

Craig White, director at Darwyn Homes, said, the homes will carry design characteristics from the pub such as the rendered elevations, and will be focused on green sources of energy with car charging points also fitted.

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