A BURTON based funeral directors have confirmed that they are the new owners of a former South Derbyshire village pub.
Murray’s Funeral Directors bought The Wheel Inn in Findern from Punch Taverns, who put the pub up for sale last July because it was no longer profitable.
An application was submitted to South Derbyshire District Council earlier this year to change the use of the building from a pub to a funeral directors.
The decision will be made at a meeting of the planning board on Tuesday night.
Sue Barke from the funeral directors said she did not expect the application for change of use to be an issue and they had just let people know out of courtesy.
However villagers who have been rallying to keep the pub as a pub have not given up their fight and will hold a meeting on Sunday night, ahead of the planning meeting, to put together comments that will be raised in a public speaking section ahead of the meeting on Tuesday.
Sue Barke from Murray’s, which is based in York Street, said: “We are the new owners and we will be opening a funeral directors there at some point in he future.
“It is not a planning issue, it was just courtesy to let people know we are changing its use.
“We have customers that way so they won’t have to travel far.”
She said they were not being secretive in not previously speaking about being the new owners.
A meeting will be held in the village hall in Findern on Sunday at 2pm for people to gather ideas and thoughts in order to make an objection speech to the planning committee as strong as possible.
The pub closed its doors for good earlier this month, despite strong feeling from residents who did not want to lose the only pub in the village.
They still hope that something can be done to prevent the changes going ahead.
A Save the Wheel Inn Facebook page was set up and some villagers have written to MP Andrew Griffiths, who said he would write to Eric Pickles, urging him to change the law regarding pubs being sold to funeral companies.