Oakman Inns is seeking to raise £2.5m through crowdfunding platform Downing Crowd to fund the total renovation of its newly acquired Royal Foresters pub site in Berkshire.

The pub group, which has committed to invest £3.5m in the historic site, wants to transform it into a high-quality pub restaurant with letting rooms, subject to planning permission.

Downing Crowd has previously raised £4.47m in crowdfunding for other Oakman sites, including The Akeman in Tring, Hertfordshire, and the Grade II listed pub restaurant renovation in Olney, Hertfordshire.

Peter Borg-Neal, founder and chief executive of Oakman, said: “It’s a privilege to be able to breathe new life into the historic Royal Foresters site that was once at the heart of the local community.

“Crowdfunding investors are helping make this a reality and we are excited to be working again with Downing on this latest project.”

Oakman Inns manages an estate of 18 pub restaurants located across the Home Counties and Midlands, and in 2017 was voted eighth best company to work for in the UK by the Sunday Times in the mid-size category.

Downing invests in established UK businesses and has invested more than £85m funding support for 60 pubs across the UK over the last 15 years.

Downing Crowd Bonds are a type of crowdfunding that allow investors to lend directly to businesses via bonds that are secured against a company’s assets, which seeks to reduce investor risk by enabling Downing the right to sell these assets if the borrower defaults on the bond.

Investors in this latest £2.5m crowdfunding raise, known as the Royal Foresters Pub Bond, can potentially earn up to 7.5% p.a. interest over a period of up to 18 months - a higher interest rate than is typically offered on crowd bonds, reflecting the higher risks involved as Royal Foresters is not yet trading.