Northampton pub to become community hub in Ecton Brook

Mr Bipin Patel, his wife Dipika and Councillor David Mackintosh pictured outside the former pub.
Mr Bipin Patel, his wife Dipika and Councillor David Mackintosh pictured outside the former pub.

A pub in Northampton - which shut three years ago - is set to reopen as a new community building for people in the Ecton Brook area.

Northampton Borough Council is set to sell the freehold of the former Ecton Brook Public House to businessman Bipin Patel for use as a new community facility.

Organisations and individuals were invited to put forward alternative proposals for the building in November, and Mr Patel’s bid was chosen to take on the site.

Mr Patel said: “My aim is to contribute to the wellbeing of Ecton Brook residents by developing affordable community spaces where people can socialise, participate in recreational and other activities and receive information as well as services.

“I have been encouraged by the extent of support from the local community and look forward to working with all in seeing this site being transformed into a social hub.”

Councillor Tim Hadland, Northampton Borough Council’s cabinet member for regeneration, enterprise and planning, said the previous pub company closed the venue after it hit financial problems.

When it became clear it was not going to reopen, he said, the council looked into alternative options for the site.

“Mr Patel’s proposal to create a new community facility is a fantastic example of local people recognising what their community needs and taking the initiative.” Councillor Hadland added.

“I am looking forward to seeing this project develop and become a real asset to people in Ecton Brook.”

Leader of the borough council, Councillor David Mackintosh, said: “This type of use for unused buildings is something we encourage, and is another example of local people taking on a bigger role in improving their area.

“Community facilities play an important role in bringing people together, and can offer a place for new groups and clubs to form and meet.

“They soon become the beating heart of an area, and I am looking forward to seeing the building open later in the year.”