There is news of a possible reprieve for the now-closed Prince of Wales -- the last public house in East Barnet village which was registered as an asset of community value at the end of last month in an attempt to safeguard its future.


Stonegate Group has finally confirmed that the pub is in the process of being sold to another pub company and should be re-opening as licensed premises.

When the Prince of Wales closed in mid-February there were indications that it might be sold on to another pub company and would be continuing in business.

In a statement, Stonegate say the group had been unable to reveal its intentions because of legal proceedings over the sale but were now ready to go public.

“We can confirm we are currently in the final stages of selling the Prince of Wales to another pub company.

“Whilst the Prince of Wales will no longer be part of the Stonegate Group, we hope to see the premises continue to be a central part of the East Barnet community and we wish the new owners the very best of luck with the venue.”

East Barnet Residents Association organised the application for the Prince of Wales to be registered as an asset of community value in order to provide at least a degree of protection against immediate redevelopment.

Lawyers for Stonegate failed to turn up for the hearing. Barry Rawlings, leader of Barnet Council, said he had no hesitation in adding the pub to Barnet’s list of buildings considered to be community assets.

At the time, the residents’ association secretary Rob White – who had organised a petition to keep the pub open – indicated that they still hoped that a new owner might be found, and that the pub would continue in business.

He told the Barnet Society he wanted to hear more before being satisfied the pub was going to be saved. Until the intended new owners were identified and had made an announcement about their plans, he was not sure what might be the outcome.

However, the Association had made it clear they would have no objections if the Prince of Wales was purchased by a pub company and re-opened for business.

“There has been a lot of interest in saving the pub because it has become a vital community hub and was always a meeting point for numerous organisations and initiatives in East Barnet village.”

East Barnet councillor Phil Cohen was encouraged by Stonegate's statement. He said that the rapid registration of the pub as a community asset and the news now that it was likely to be sold to another pub company showed that a strong community response could have an impact and looked like paying off.

Stonegate, which spent £290,000 refurbishing the Prince of Wales in the summer of 2022, is being forced by financial pressures to reduce its vast portfolio of 4,500 licensed premises.  

The application for an ACV was made because of fears the pub might be demolished to make way for a block of flats.