Welcome to The Holbrook Community Society

The Spotted Cow is more than a pub,

it’s a Community Hub.

Our Beginnings

An opportunity arose when the Spotted Cow pub, a longstanding focal point of the village, was threatened with destruction by housing developers. A group of far-sighted villagers saw the potential to turn a 150 year old pub into a modern community hub and after a rapid campaign the Holbrook Community Society was born.

In November 2016 the Society was registered: over 200 residents put in around £200,000 and a similar amount came from two financial institutions. The Spotted Cow was bought for £275,000 and extensive refurbishment, reconfiguration and equipping was possible using the balance of the funds. As important as the money was the huge amount of skill, time and effort put into the renovation work by a small army of volunteers.

The Current Position

Holbrook Community Society is represented by a Management Committee of up to 13 elected investors who have wide-ranging talents and experience.

The Spotted Cow pub hosts a number of community events and employs about ten staff.

The Spotted Calf café is run directly by the Management Committee and also employs about ten part-time staff who are supported by a dozen or more volunteers.

The Post Office contract was secured in 2018 when the existing postmistress wished to retire. It operates inside the café, 7 days a week.

There is one double guest room, also run by the Management Committee with a team of volunteers, which is advertised locally and via Airbnb and Booking.com.

There are over 250 investors and the share offer remains open which means people can invest on similar terms to the original investors.

The Society has hosted national “More than a Pub” events to promote the work of the community sustainability charity, the Plunkett Foundation. We were runner-up in the Foundation’s national “Better Business Award” in December 2018.

The Future

There is a strong, genuine, social reward knowing that their investment is being put to building community cohesion.
Community ownership of the post office within the centre of the village will continue to be a real catalyst for the economic and social development of the village, achieving transformative, community‐led service delivery under one roof.
The Society aims to support the provision and expansion of facilities for local residents and tourist visitors alike, working with other amenity providers in the village rather than in competition.
Efforts continue to provide the community with the facilities and opportunities they need to feel bonded. These include the book group and well-dressing; with plans to host additional sports groups and an expanded events calendar including the already resurrected Damson Festival, the established Christmas Market and the Easter Eggstravaganza.


The Society welcomes newcomers as investors, volunteers or potential staff members (as well, of course, as customers!).

Please contact us and let us know your interest.

12 Town Street, Holbrook, Belper, DE56 0TA
Email: holbrookcommunitysociety@gmail.com
Phone: 01332 882537

Holbrook Community Society Rules

Take a look at our community rules

Holbrook Community Open Share Offer

Take a look at our open share offer

Holbrook Community Business Plan

Take a look at our business plan

The Spotted Cow Pub
01332 880 798

The Spotted Calf Cafe
01332 882 537

The Spotted Cow Guest Room
01332 880 798

Holbrook Post Office
01332 882 537

Holbrook Community Society

A Community Benefit Society registered with the FCA.
(registration number 7446)

12 Town Street
DE56 0TA

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