Mystery had surrounded the fate of the family friendly Fox pub – formerly the Fox and Hounds – after it shut its doors unexpectedly and strange messages began to appear on its website.
A notice attached to the front door suggested it would be reopening in two weeks but speculation became rife in the village after the name of the venue was changed on the pub website to ‘The Fox Hole’ with the claim that it would be reopening under new management as an adult members club with late night opening and displayed a photo of a scantily clad pole dancer.
An article which appeared in the Daily Echo on Saturday only served to fuel speculation after it suggested that building could become a venue for “cavorting pole dancers and sex parties late into the night”.
Promised attractions on the pubs website included swinger nights (partner swapping), cougar nights (designed to pair older women with younger men), gay nights and even biker events where beer would be served by ‘very tasty women’.
The website also claims it has received nearly over 8,000 visitors and over 1400 emails since announcing its plans that over 250 people had already indicated they would like to join.
Following Saturday’s Echo article the pub website has updated its main page with the claim that the pubs owners Enterprise inns had:
“‘Refused a large investment from a local man who wanted to take over the Fox and make a very positive change for the community”
The webpage is also currently displaying a series of photos which appear to allege that Enterprise Inns want to sell the site for use as a supermarket or housing – possibly for asylum seekers.
A spokesperson for Enterprise Inns slammed the website’s claims as ‘mischief making’ and stressed that the Fox website was not under their control.
Eastleigh News was told there are no plans in place to redevelop the site, only to reopen it as a bar and restaurant.
The company’s website is offering the Fox’s lease for £750 per week and describes it as a ‘fantastic business opportunity’.
Fair Oak Parish Cllr Hugh McGuinness told Eastleigh News that the Parish Council had thought the website claims were ‘just a joke’.
This is not the first time the Fox and Hounds have been in the news following a sudden closure. In November 2008 the pub was shut after the team managing the premises went into liquidation – early victims of the recession.
There are now two closed pub restaurants in the Bishopstoke and Fair Oak local area. The Prince of Wales on Bishopstoke Road is also boarded up and facing an uncertain future.