Community pub in North Yorkshire village opens video conferencing room for remote workers

A community-owned pub near Bedale has pivoted to remote working by providing a home from home.

Tom and Becci Baker outside the Exelby Green Dragon

The Exelby Green Dragon has opened a new workspace with video conferencing facilities aimed at groups and individuals who would otherwise work remotely.

The new room will also be available for societies and hobby groups such as book clubs to hire in the evenings, and can be booked by businesses for meetings.

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The widescreen TV and fast broadband connection were funded from a grant from the not-for-profit organisation Pub is the Hub, which promotes pubs as essential local amenities and helps them to diversify.

The new video conferencing room can host groups

The pub is run by Tom and Becci Baker but managed by a committee of local residents who bought the building when it came onto the market in 2018.

Mr Baker said: “This new community room will offer those people working from home a safe environment, appeal to local groups as well as offering conference facilities for local businesses.”

“The great audio-visual facilities will allow us to offer events to get the local residents together. The shop and café we opened in 2019 has already extended our appeal to new people and villagers who didn’t traditionally use the pub and we want to make sure we continue to attract more people locally.”

The pub opened a delicatessen shop and café in 2019 also with the help and support of Pub is The Hub, which has proved to be a great success.

The couple have applied for grants to help the pub diversify into a local hub

Pub is The Hub regional advisor Nigel Williams said: “The Exelby Green Dragon is a pub that has the full support of people living locally.

“It is really the only social meeting point for the village so adding in a facility that appeals to groups and businesses will be really key in helping local people to connect for both business and pleasure.”