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Popular pub raises bar by serving up scholarships

Clerkenwell local that reopened in 2016 offers funding for nine young people who have ideas to change the world

27 July, 2018 — By Helen Chapman

Students who have previously received Sekforde Arms scholarships

A PUB with a philanthropic mission is using profits from pulling pints to fund another round of scholarships for students facing hardship.

David Lonsdale, who bought Clerkenwell local the Sekforde Arms after it closed in 2015, is offering nine scholarships to young people who have ideas to change the world and want to further their education. This includes the offer of one £25,000 scholarship to help fund a PhD. Applications will open on November 1.

Mr Lonsdale said: “We are looking to fund a PhD to do with sustainability. A lot of research needs to be done on plastics in the ocean and what could practically be done to stop it. The rest of the money is for brilliant students who can be doing anything. We had over 300 applications last year and could only help five. This year we hope we are able to do more.”

Among the students who benefited last year was Emilie Parry Williams, a classical soprano singer who lives in Camden Road.

The pub reopened in December 2016 after Mr Lonsdale spent three years renovating it. The first floor has a 19th-century ballroom where lectures and debates are held.

Mr Lonsdale, who lives above the pub, said: “People come here because they know we use money for scholarships and they like that. It’s one of reasons they come, as well as it being a good pub.”

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