Welcome to the ‘Save our Crown’ community group

Save Our Crown are a group of local residents, many with experience in business and hospitality, dedicated to saving our last pub in the Village.

We came together when a planning application was submitted for change of use and are doing all we can to save it.

Through surveys, consultations, and share purchases, we know we have the support of our community and beyond, to buy the pub and make the necessary improvements to help it become the thriving hub of our community once again.  

We have full support from our MP, David Warburton, and our County, District and Parish Councils.  

We have a community waiting to return to the pub, but it will not be reopening as a pub unless we can save it.   We have plans in place to ensure our pub belongs to the community of Fivehead and beyond, forever.

Meet the ‘Save Our Crown’ Team

James Benton
James has almost 20 years’ experience in financial and legal services. He has worked as a Branch Manager for a large insurer, before qualifying as a financial adviser, and later a legal executive, setting up his own company, which is well established. James has skills in managing staff, financial planning, and understands the importance of supporting our community, having coached local sports teams, and serving on local committees for several years.
Edward Blunt
Edward was a founding partner of a local software company and ran it for 20 years before finally selling it in 2008.
This involved business planning, marketing, employing staff (up to 50 staff), strategic planning, logistics and project planning. Edward holds a Masters in Business Administration (MBA).
He has lived in the local area for 35 years and in that time has served on a village Hall committee and been Chairman of the board of governors of Hambridge Primary School.
Philippa Brett
Pip has been a Parish Councillor for six years and, through acting as Parish Council Representative, the Society knows the Parish Council is fully committed to supporting this venture and will do all it can to help preserve this community facility.

Pip was a police officer for 23 years and says a pub is vitally important for community cohesion and reducing isolation, especially now after the disruption of the pandemic. Her final role in the police was on a small team, working on a £127m cost saving project, transforming custody processes to achieve maximum efficiency. She has secured multiple, much needed grants for our Village facilities, and is keen to ensure our community remains vibrant, despite the challenges we have regarding housing, transportation, and youth employment.
Carrie Cunningham
Carrie has worked as a hairdresser, hospital receptionist, and spent 10 years running her own pub in Oxfordshire. She moved to Fivehead almost three years ago and loves being involved socially, is part of the Playing Field committee and helps deliver the Village newsletter. She feels the village lost some of it’s vitality when The Crown Inn closed for good, and is keen to give as much support as possible towards re-opening the Crown as a community hub.
Dave Cunningham
An ex-banker and management consultant, I ran a 1200 member Social Club in Surrey for 7 years. I moved to Fivehead courtesy of Escape to the Country, in October 2018. I quickly fell in love with Fivehead and the seminal role that The Crown played in forming our excellent circle of friends. My strengths are in organising and managing people. With a good team I hope to secure the Crown for ourselves and future generations.
Victoria Fransham
Victoria has served on several committees during her 35 years in Somerset. She has acted as a chairperson for the local French Twinning for many years, secretary of the local Italian Twinning for over a decade, as well as treasurer of the local Scout group committee. Victoria additionally was involved with the South Somerset Community Justice Panel for over 10 years, assisting with facilitating meetings and mediation processes. With a background in marketing, Victoria runs her own language school and has therefore been involved with Risk Assessments, public liability scenarios and all aspects of Health & Safety.
Bernie Graham
Bernie worked for over 30 years as an in-house Surveyor, managing the property interests of a number of multi-site occupiers including Whitbread, Wetherspoons, the charity Age UK and latterly Post Office Limited. Her diverse role encompassed both leasehold and freehold acquisitions of a wide variety of property, from development land to build TGI Fridays restaurants, to small high street units for retailers. She managed the ongoing legal and professional relationships between landlord and tenant, and at the other end of the scale, disposed of surplus unprofitable units, always with the remit of creatively extracting best value from property assets.

Bernie believes this makes her ideally qualified to advise on matters relating to the purchase of the pub and, should a tenant be a consideration at any future date, to assist with the granting of a suitable lease reflecting the needs of the CBS.
Peter Headington
Peter has 40 years experience of sales and marketing having worked at Director and senior management levels for medium to large corporates. These include HSBC, Granada, EMC and most recently for Lionbridge, the largest translation services company globally where Peter was Regional Director for UK and Ireland. He has a keen interest in youth football and cricket and has run successful junior sections for clubs in Henley and in Chard.

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Save Our Crown

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