It was 'never our intention to offend', say the landlords of a recently-renamed, historic pub in Binstead on the Isle of Wight.

After 169 years, The Fleming Arms, as it was previously known, has undergone a name change.

It is now called the Binstead Arms, as the County Press first revealed last week.

The decision prompted anger from some Islanders, who took to Facebook to voice concerns about a piece of the village's history being 'wiped away'.

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Now, landlords Anthony and Samantha Rowthorn, who took over the running of the Binstead Road pub in January, have sought to explain why they've changed the name.

They said they were 'unable' to escape 'misleading information, negative reviews or feedback' left from previous regimes, despite a significant financial sacrifice.

Isle of Wight County Press:

A post on the pub's Facebook said: "We have always had a vision of creating a true community pub, with traditional offerings. We are proud to be an inclusive employer, using local suppliers and fund raising for local island-based charities.

"We know, to many including our regulars, it will always be referred to as ‘The Fleming Arms’, we accept this, but we do not wish for new customers to be deterred by stumbling across misleading information, negative reviews or feedback caused by previous incumbents."

To keep some of the pub's history, the pair said they have renamed the beer garden to The Fleming Garden.

They are also welcoming historical photos or prints to add to those already displayed inside.

They thanked those who have supported their decision to change the name.

They said: "It has been well received by the vast majority of both the local and wider community. However, we know that in doing so we have offended a number of people (and read associated negative posts about our decision) – which was never our intention.

"In the same breath, we would like to say a heartfelt thank you to all those people that have defended, shown their support and wished us well. We thought we would take this opportunity to explain our decision."

They said their journey to take on the pub tenancy started early in 2022.

This included researching the history of the pub, its successes, and its recent failures.

"If we had not seen its potential and entered into the tenancy for the pub, then the future viability as a public house was most definitely in danger of being lost forever to a corporate giant convenience retailer", they said.

They added: "We will continue to pour our heart and souls into rebuilding this venture for as long as the community of Binstead Community and beyond have the thirst for a thriving pub."

The couple, who have a vast background in the hospitality sector on the mainland, run the pub as part of a retail partnership with company, Stonegate.

Speaking to the County Press earlier this year, they said they're "Islanders at heart" and hoped to turn the pub into a place for the community.