By Tara O’Connor, Local Democracy Reporter
A third JD Wetherspoon pub is set to close its doors for good in the space of just seven months in Croydon.
The pub chain has confirmed it has made the “commercial decision” to sell off the Foxley Hatch in Purley.
The pub, in Russell Hill Road, was in 2015 saved after 1,800 backed a petition. But now the Purley pub will join two others in Croydon that have closed in the past year.
The Skylark in South End closed in March, despite a strong local campaign, including a petition of 1,000 signatures, to save it.
This came a month after The Milan Bar in the town centre closed down on Valentine’s Day.
David Lands, chairman of the Croydon and Sutton branch of the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA), said: “It is a huge shame for Purley. That is three Wetherspoons pubs closing in a year, we had 10 in the borough 10 years ago.
“It is important to support our remaining pubs. I hope that the other pubs in Purley can pick up the trade.
“It seems unlikely that other pub companies will be expanding their portfolios. It is interesting that the two Wetherspoons pubs in Croydon which shut haven’t gone to new operators and are still standing empty.”
One local said staff at the pub suggested it could close by the end of October, but at this stage, no formal date has been given. A JD Wetherspoon spokesman said it will remain open until the sale goes through.
JD Wetherspoon spokesman Eddie Gershon said: “On occasion Wetherspoon does put some of its pubs up for sale.
“This is a commercial decision. We understand that customers and staff will be disappointed with it. The pub will continue to operate as a Wetherspoon outlet until it is sold.”
The Foxley Hatch in Russel Hill Road, Purley (Picture: Google Street View)