The recent history…
…of the Duke of Marlborough is one of determination, passion, and ultimate success for the community group that now own and run the Duke of Marlborough.
In Autumn 2014 the previous owners of the pub, who had successfully been running a restaurant-style business for 13 years, let it be known that they would be retiring and closing at Christmas. The realisation struck that they would be seeking any buyer – likely someone with an eye on residential conversion. If that was to happen, Somersham would be left evermore without a village pub, and the village’s 500 year old tradition of hospitality would come to an end.
‘NOT ON OUR WATCH’ was the view of one determined villager! Sarah Caston, from the village’s farming family, persuaded a small group to set up and hold a public meeting in November 2014, to ask if people would support a community buy-out. Bolstered by the recent success of groups in other Suffolk villages, the mood was high, and an overwhelming positive response came back. The campaign to ‘Save the Duke’ was born!