The Inklings Group – named in honour of the pub’s former patrons, J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis et al. – has been established as a Community Interest Company and has signed a long-term lease to relaunch the pub. The Inklings are a diverse and eclectic mix of Oxford people, past and present, scientists and entrepreneurs, writers and artists, Town and Gown, as well as local businesses and suppliers.
Kate O’Brien, Chairman of The Inklings Group, said:
‘Several hundred people, brought together by a love of Oxford and the Lamb & Flag pub, have established the Inklings Group to secure the future of this well-loved pub. We are determined to ensure that the next 408 years of this beloved pub will be as fun, interesting and impactful as the last 408 years. Our hope and belief is that the pub will remain as a community asset at the centre of the magical Oxford scene. The funds to ensure a sustainable future for the pub have already been committed. This community project is not exclusive in any way and all are welcome to become an Inkling.’
The Inklings are grateful to St John’s College for sharing their vision and supporting the relaunch of a pub aimed at local philanthropy and positive impact rather than profit. The Inklings also wish to thank the many volunteers who have helped make this dream a reality. They look forward to welcoming the public in the pub soon.
Zoe Hancock, Principal Bursar of St John’s College, added:
‘We are delighted to be working with The Inklings Group to reopen the Lamb & Flag pub. The Lamb & Flag is much loved by our students, staff, Fellows and the wider community, and we believe the vision of The Inkling Group will bring great benefit to all.’
The pub’s character will be preserved, and it will undergo light redecoration and refurbishment. It is expected to open in time for this year’s festive season.