A CLOSED down community pub in Weymouth is to reopen under new management.

The Waterloo on the corner of William Street and Grange Road in the Park District closed at the end of last month after its previous managers handed back the keys and moved out of the area.

Before lockdown started the pub was popular for its live music gigs and charity events. It showed live sports matches as well as serving home-cooked food.

Pub management company Admiral Taverns has now announced that new managers have been found and expect to reopen later this month after a refurbishment. Building work is currently under way at the premises.

A spokesperson for Admiral Taverns said: "We can confirm a new tenant has been found for the Waterloo and we hope to re-open the pub later this month following a transformational refurbishment.

"We're always looking to work with licensees who will run sustainable businesses and we're really excited about the future of the Waterloo Inn. We wish the pub every success for the future."

Dave Harris, chairman of West Dorset Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA), expressed concern about difficult trading conditions caused by the pandemic.

He said: "The Waterloo is one of those nice little backstreet pubs, a genuine community pub.

"All the new restrictions have been such a problem for pubs so it's not a surprise that so many end up closing - it's something that we're really worried about, but there's so little anyone can do about it.

"We've got to take a long view of this - the problem is whoever comes in is going to have to be trading under the same conditions - it's a very fragile situation.

"Smaller community pubs are particularly affected as it can be extremely difficult to manage social distancing - so it's difficult to know what will happen eventually. Unfortunately I expect there will be others that will close as well in time for the same reason."