The Foxley Hatch in Purley is to close by the end of October, one of 32 Wetherspoons pubs put up for sale across the country.
The Foxley Hatch will be the third Wetherspoons in Croydon to close this year, following the Skylark in South Croydon and the Milan Bar in the town centre. Neither of those venue has yet re-opened under new management.
The widescale sale of pub properties by Wetherspoons, the company run by Brexit enthusiast Tim Martin, has been widely interpreted as one of the latest consequences of the cost-of-living crisis that has been, at least in part, aggravated by the impact of Brexit.
A Wetherspoons spokesperson was quoted this week as saying that the closures and disposals were because repairs and staff costs rendered their no-nonsense drinking culture financially perilous.
If a FTSE-250 company is being hit this hard by the Tory-created recession, there must be hundreds of other independent pubs and smaller companies who must be fearful for the future of their businesses as energy costs soar.
JD Wetherspoon operates around 800 pubs in the UK and Ireland, and said its closures are a “commercial decision”. More than half of the pubs slated for closure are in London and the south-east.
The sites are a mix of 10 freehold and 22 leasehold units.
“We understand that customers and staff will be disappointed with it,” a spokesperson for the company said.
A Foxley Hatch regular told Inside Croydon: “We heard the whisper at the weekend. It’s a shock, and a disappointment, too.
“The staff here work ever so hard, and the place has always seemed busy. But then, from what we heard, the Skylark did decent business, too, and they closed that. We reckon there’s a lot more to this decision.”
Among the other ‘Spoons put on the market are the Wrong ‘Un in Bexleyheath, the Asparagus in Battersea and the Bankers Draft in Eltham.
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