The new owners of a popular old pub in Catford have countered rumours that it was closed because it was going to turn into flats.

The Black Horse & Harrow, around since the 1700s, has been closed since early 2017 and regulars feared the landmark pub would disappear.

With the sudden closure with no planning permission applied for a new license, many people wrote online saying they believed the pub would turn into more flats.

However James Walsh, councillor for Rushey Green, sought clarification from the new owners on what their plans were after its rapid closure.

He said: "At the time some rumours arose regarding Lewisham Council forcing closure by not renewing the licence, and after investigation I can confirm that this was not true.

"Black Horse and Harrows new operators have now got in touch to confirm the pub will remain a pub, and they’re just about to instruct AG&G to look for a new operator.

"I hope this allays fears that we may lose this as a community asset, and that when it reopens you’ll all join me in welcoming the new venture to our community."

A statement from new owner JGN Property said: "As the new owner of The Black Horse & Harrow we're aware of the pub's local standing and our intention is very much to have it back up and running as soon as possible.

"We've applied for the license to be transferred to us and have also appointed AG&G, a specialist agent in the licensed leisure arena, to help us secure a tenant who can continue operating the pub."