The fundraiser to support the relaunch of the Cat and Fiddle Inn near Buxton has surpassed its target as the final total is counted.
The Cat & Fiddle Inn has been raising funds to begin work on the derelict site in hopes of relaunching the space as a gin and whiskey distillery, with eating facilities and a newly-restored pub.
Donations have totalled £54,548 in only 42 days, which will give new licensee, Karl Bond, a ‘great start’ as they begin to undertake basic tasks to begin the pub’s transformation.
Managing director of Forest Distillery, Karl, with co-owner Lindsay, have taken the first steps of the massive challenge that lies ahead of them. Clean water, modernised waste removal and roof repairs are all in their long to-do list.
The Cat & Fiddle Inn is located on the A537 between Buxton and Macclesfield and Karl, 41 and Lindsay, 40 - both from Macclesfield Forest - are looking forward to the future, thanks to the money raised by the community.
Karl said: “It is honestly unbelievable, we’ve been absolutely blown away at the support.
“The pub is important to people - their grandparents got married here, or they were proposed to here, it is filled with these lovely community stories, and I think that is why so many people have got behind the relaunch.
“The crowd-funder did better than we imagined. We offered corporate days out, tours with drinks included, plaques on the wall, a number of things and that is where the money has come from - people are getting something for the money they’ve put into the Cat & Fiddle.
“We’ve started the work but we are at ground-zero, there is so much to do. Fingers crossed, phase two, all the exciting decorating and installing the bar, will begin next year.”
The relaunch also means a range of new jobs for the Buxton area.
Karl added: “We will be recruiting in the new year, looking for bartenders and tour guides.
“We will definitely be looking to the local community to fill these positions.”
The pre-booked tours of the distillery are set to start in April, and the pub hopes to reopen officially by mid-late summer.
Karl and Linsday continued: “We just want to say the biggest thank you to everyone who has been involved and contributed.
“We can’t wait to pour everyone a drink.”