Fancy owning a share in the most remote pub on the Scottish mainland?

It takes an 18-mile hike over mountains, a seven-mile sea crossing or – for some – a helicopter flight to get there, but the draw of the most remote pub on the mainland never ends.

Now those who call The Old Forge on the Knoydart Peninsula in the north-west Highlands their local have launched a bold fundraising campaign to buy over the pub and run it themselves.

The pub went on the market in February for overs over £425,000, with the beachfront property coming with panoramic views, six moorings and a helipad.

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The 100-strong population quickly registered an interest in taking it over – and saving the venue from potentially being sold off as a holiday home.

The Old Forge on the Knoydart Peninsula is the most remote pub on the mainland. PIC: Mark Harris.

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Now a community share offer has been launched to raise £204,500, which will be used to help make an offer on the pub and get the business thriving at the heart of Knoydart once again.

Residents Stephanie Harris, of The Old Forge Community Benefit Society Ltd, said: “In such a small community, pubs play a vital role in the social and economic health of the area.

"As Knoydart has developed over the last decade, unfortunately our pub has not and today it does not provide the services that locals and visitors expect.

Around 100 locals of the Old Forge on the Knoydart Peninsula have launched a bid to buy the pub after it went on the market in February. PIC: Andy Malbon/geograph.org.

"We feel very strongly that under community ownership the pub can be rebuilt in to a thriving business at the heart of the community again, and today marks a huge milestone in making that happen.”

Members of the local community and interested parties are now invited to invest in the society and become shareholders.

Ms Harris, secretary of the society, said: “By investing in shares, members will have a direct say in the future success of the society and the pub once under community ownership.”

Residents will be able to buy in to the pub from just £25 with a higher bracket of investment, which is open to all, starting at £10,000.

Ms Harris said: “Under our society’s rules, 75 per cent of the shareholder members must be residents within our community, and this is to ensure that the pub will always be managed by the community it serves.

"However, this means that we have set ourselves an ambitious target to raise over £200,000 from around just 100 people.

"To maximise our fundraising potential, we have set the minimum investment amount for the 25 per cent of non-resident shareholders at £10,000. Group applications are welcome as well as individual members.”

Benefits to investing in the Old Forge include interest payments, voting rights, the opportunity to stand for election onto the management committee – as well as a 5 per cent discount on food and drink bills for the first three years.

An application to the Scottish Land Fund for the remaining capital needed to buy the pub has also been submitted, with a decision due in the next few weeks.

Ms Harris said the buyout of the Old Forge had generated interest around the world, with a crowdfunding campaign also to be launched to allow “many more people many more people to get involved in the project and put their own stamp on the future of the Forge”.

Details of the share offer are available at www.theoldforgecbs.org/invest.

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