The creation of another community pub in North Yorkshire has been welcomed by Rishi Sunak, amid news of further funding being secured to extend the dining room.

The Old Horn, at Spennithorne, near Leyburn, will reopen shortly following the successful purchase by a community group.

The Old Horn Community Pub Society bought the building last year with money raised through a share offer and almost £200,000 of match funding from the Government’s Community Ownership Fund.

Mr Sunak formally supported the group’s application to the Government fund in his role as the local MP.

He recently visited the pub to see refurbishment work nearing completion and praised the work of the group and its supporters.

Darlington and Stockton Times: Rishi Sunak with members of the Old Horn Community Pub Society outside the Old Horn, Spennithorne

He said: “The pub is the hub for so many communities and I have been delighted to support the Old Horn group in its mission to bring this much-loved community pub back to life with a sustainable future.

“When I created the Community Ownership Fund during my time as Chancellor, it was places like this that I had in mind where the power of the community could be harnessed to create viable businesses. I am delighted that the Old Horn is another local pub that has been saved with the help of the fund.”

Another community pub group that has already received support from the fund is the Countryman’s Inn at Hunton, near Bedale. A group wishing to purchase the Farmers Arms at Muker has submitted an application with Mr Sunak’s support and in West Rounton, near Northallerton, villagers are preparing a bid linked with their plan to purchase the Horseshoe Inn.

Mr Sunak has previously supported community pub ventures in Skeeby, near Richmond (Travellers Rest) and Exelby, near Bedale (Green Dragon).

Leigh Carmichael, secretary of the Old Horn Community Pub Society, said: "The group would like to thank investors, including Rishi, the volunteers and those who have provided professional services to help us.

“It really has been a community effort, and the rewards will be a place to socialise, eat, drink and have a laugh with mates, friends and family.”

The Old Horn group has also received a boost from the National Lottery Community Fund which has awarded the pub just over £50,000 to help fund works to extend the dining room and create a fully accessible toilet.

A group spokeswoman said extending the dining room was always part of the original plan for the Old Horn, but funds raised through shareholders and matched funding were committed to essential works. The National Lottery award had enabled the group to pursue the desirable element of its initial plan.

This work will be scheduled for the autumn so as not to disrupt the summer season.

Mirela and Kornel Kocsis have been appointed tenants of the Old Horn from May with the pub re-opening shortly afterwards. Both have extensive experience in the hospitality industry, Kornel as a chef and Mirela front of house.

Before taking on the Old Horn, the couple had run a Hungarian restaurant in Blackpool.