From Hayley Stevenson, Newport:
I am writing in response to the article about the closure of the Dark Horse, in Brading, (CP, 04-04-14)
I was the on-off landlady/manager of the Dark Horse for the past five years.
During this time, I would say only very few residents of Brading used the restaurant on a regular basis.
It was very hard to get full customer support from the locals of Brading or Brading Town Council.
I am eternally grateful to the few locals who did patronise the restaurant and they will know who they are.
When I saw the article, I was extremely upset because half the people in the photograph you published had never set foot in the pub in the five years I was there.
When I started to run into difficulties last December, I was not supported by the locals, even though it was public knowledge trading was poor.
I would really have appreciated a save our pub campaign to keep the business operational by them using and enjoying the facility they are now claiming to want to save.
There was no concern from these villagers when I was losing not only my job but my home, along with the staff I had the privilege to work with.
The locals did not bat an eyelid and only now, since the closure of the business and subsequent planning application, have they have shown an interest and started the save our pub campaign.
The Dark Horse consistently lost considerable amounts of money in the years I was there.
This was not due to poor management but due to lack of support from local customers.
The best option for this site is a sympathetic development to gain more living accommodation and attract more customers, who would also use the opportunity to use other businesses in Brading.