Pub sale is potential Blackness bonanza

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A pub, in an area which has had a dramatic spike in tourism due to its use as a film location, is back on the market.

It has emerged that The Blackness Inn will be up for auction in Edinburgh on Thursday, February 7, with offers starting at £250,000.

Billed as “a super investment opportunity” by Future Property Auctions, which is handling the sale, the refurbished premises also includes a shop and five bedroom property above, in addition to the bar itself.

And the fact that the premises is finally up for grabs has been widely welcomed in the village and beyond as both a bona fide moneyspinner and much-needed amenity.

The pub was temporarily closed for a fortnight owing to a family bereavement but is trading until 5pm during the day, while remaining closed at night for the time being.

The Journal understands that there has already been a healthy level of interest from potential buyers.

Councillor David Aitchison said: “The sale of Blackness Inn is in the best interests for the community of Blackness.

“It could offer an outstanding facility for both locals and for tourists who are visiting the filming location of many great films or walking the John Muir Way.

“A central hub within the village where people can call in for refreshments and hopefully a bite to eat would prove an invaluable asset for all concerned and potentially provide some employment opportunities for villagers.”

Blackness Community Council has also welcomed the move.

A spokesperson said: “Our village needs more facilities to cater for the increased visitor numbers being attracted to the castle and the John Muir Way.

“We are fortunate to still have our public toilets and the boat club but we would welcome the reopening of the inn as a cafe bar restaurant with shop.

“A well-managed facility would be a real asset for the area and would be welcomed by locals and visitors alike.

“We are hopeful that a motivated buyer will be found who recognises the unique value of such a prime commercial location and can create a really successful enterprise for the benefit of all.”

Last April, Historic Environment Scotland said there had been an 182 per cent increase in visitors to Blackness Castle since 2013, which is chiefly due to the fact that hits like ‘Outlander’ and ‘Outlaw King’ have been filmed there.

So too has ‘Mary Queen of Scots’, which has its UK release next Friday (January 18).

Meanwhile, Neil Christison, VisitScotland’s Regional Director, praised “beautiful” Blackness and added: “With set-jetting a continuing trend in Scottish tourism, whereby film and TV fans visit the locations seen on-screen, we’ve no doubt its popularity will grow with the castle.”