Bloxham residents packed into Jubilee Hall on Sunday to discuss plans to turn a village pub into a community hub.
The Red Lion in High Street closed in August and was put on the market by its owners Fullers. About 200 people attended Sunday’s meeting to hear how they could help buy the building by becoming shareholders.
Colin Challenger, village resident and chairman of the steering group, said: “The whole community believes in this project and we need to put our weight behind it. If the site becomes another development it will destroy the village and its facilities.
“It is really important that everybody goes away and thinks about it. We want people to fill in forms to become shareholders and get them back to us as soon as possible so we can make Fullers an offer soon rather than later.”
The village has six weeks to confirm its interest in buying the site and then six months to negotiate completion.
The project is hoping to raise £500,000 and will be run using an Industrial and Provident Society (IPS) business model.
It means villagers can buy shares worth £250. As a shareholder, they are entitled to one vote when electing people onto a management committee to run the site.
People will have the chance to put themselves forward to become a member of the committee.
Brian Auld of Brethertons Solicitors in Banbury is also part of the steering group and said: “This is a one-off opportunity to do something like this.
“If we miss this chance we will not get another one like it.”
Another meeting has been scheduled to take place in the next three to four weeks.
For more information or to download a shareholder form, visit www.redlionhub.moonfruit.com