Long Dog starts fundraising campaign after fire

Building destroyed by fire - Owner of The Long Dog in Waddesdon Alan Richards is pictured at the site of the fire
Building destroyed by fire - Owner of The Long Dog in Waddesdon Alan Richards is pictured at the site of the fire

A Waddesdon pub has started a fundraising campaign after a fire destoyed one of their buildings.

The fire at the Long Dog started when a mackerel smoker malfunctioned in a storage building on December 17, reducing the structure to rubble.

Alan Richards, the pub’s owner, said: “The plan is to rebuild it as a community space. We’re starting a campaign and estimate we’ll need to raise around £20,000,”

Attention has now turned to plans for a new building and Mr Richards is looking to the community to assist with renovations.

With the launch of a fundraising campaign the pub hopes to revitalise the wreckage for the benefit of the village.

Mr Richards said: “The building was used by all locals, staff, customers and friends and we want some good to come out of this for them. It is all of these people that we would like to help.”

The space had also served the community by providing storage facilities for local businesses, including a coffee shop, a handyman and a member of the pub’s staff who had been building a custom motorcycle.

Mr Richards added: “The building had also served as a workshop and had only recently been reshelved and organised. It was just finished, which is the upsetting thing.”

Staff members are hoping to start the fundraising with a music gig held where the building used to stand.

The designs for the new space are yet to be finalised with potential ideas for the renovation including a new garden or extending the pub’s car park.

The fire itself caused the A41 to be shut in both directions.

Fire services informed Mr Richards that, if the wind had been a little stronger, the thatched roof of the pub could have ignited.

A stone wall also protected nearby oil and gas tanks from the blaze.

The pub has lost equipment and supplies including meat slicers, unused promotional materials and brand new glasses for the Christmas period that had yet to be unpacked.

Mr Richards said: “The outbuilding is completely destroyed and although I’ve tried to stay positive, the damage is really quite bad.”

To support their campaign to rebuild visit www.gofundme.com/thelongdog