THINGS are looking up for Apsley after confirmation the Border Inn Hotel has been bought and could reopen soon.
A group of 12 Apsley locals have bought the well-known hotel and the spokesman for the group, Michael Ryan, said he was absolutely delighted with the outcome.
The purchase price was witheld on confidentiality grounds but Mr Ryan said work would start shortly to have the hotel ready to reopen, ideally before the Apsley Cup in March.
"The Apsley pub has always had a good reputation," he told the Herald.
"We're looking to make it a nice relaxed place with good meals and cold beer."
Plans have already been drawn up with the aim to reopen the Border Inn in March, largely dependent upon regulatory approvals.
High on the list are to rework the kitchen arrangements - possibly removing two rooms to have the kitchen open out onto the dining room - and add a disabled toilet.
Mr Ryan said he was encouraged with the commitment displayed by the new owners.
"Clearly there is a strong belief that reopening the hotel will add significantly to the strength and cohesion of the local community," he said.
"The position of manager will be advertised shortly and ideally an enthusiastic manager can be found for the business.
"It is expected there could be further opportunities down the track for enthusiastic people interested in the hotel trade."
Mr Ryan said the idea was to reopen the pub as a family place to serve the town and its surrounds.
"We are looking to create a place that becomes a focal point for the community and for families to feel welcome and at home," he said.
"As well as the usual hotel fare, it will be set up to serve quality coffee and other refreshments."
There is an ideal area out the back for a barbecue and beer garden. We wish to introduce relaxed daytime dining as the operation grows."
Mr Ryan said as part of the town's long history, it was important that it retained a strong community and the hotel was a key part of its future.
In further good news for Apsley, Mr Ryan said it was expected the shop across from the pub would also reopen soon.
This would in turn reduce pressure on the Apsley Post Office, currently the only open business in town, to "do it all" and would mean people from Apsley would no longer have to travel to do everyday things such as grocery shopping.