Devon family-friendly pub that was former Wetherspoons to go up for auction

The Isaac Merritt pub in Paignton, which is known for its family-friendly atmosphere and good food, is to be put up for auction this month by Pugh.

The pub, which has been given a £450,000 guide price, is let on a seven-year lease which runs until 2027, at a rent of £67,600 a year. It was one of 16 pubs put up for sale by Wetherspoons in 2019 and has been refurbished during lockdown.

The 7,000 sq ft Isaac Merritt is named after 19th century American inventor Isaac Merritt Singer, founder of the Singer sewing machine company, who settled in Paignton in the 1870s.

Subject to planning, there are proposals to build a five-storey residential development above the pub, comprising 33 one and two-bedroom apartments.

Pugh associate director Paul Parker said: “With the UK holiday boom set to be here to stay, the Isaac Merritt represents an excellent opportunity for investment in a thriving seaside town. After all the challenges of lockdown, pubs and restaurants in visitor hotspots such as Paignton have been doing excellent business this summer and that is forecast to continue.

“The new accommodation scheme that could potentially be developed above the Isaac Merritt would also be beneficial in increasing footfall. Needless to say we have had a great deal of interest in this property.”

Bidding on the Isaac Merritt, and the other lots in Pugh’s online auction, opens on 21 September and closes the following day. To view the full catalogue, go to 

Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic Pugh has sold lots totalling over £70m at its auctions, held on the firm’s online platform.