A SINGLE teenage mum who has been living rent- free above a Worcester pub says she and her sick baby will soon be homeless after new managers arrived to take over.

Megan Franklin, aged 17, and 11-month-old Grace Phipps have less than a fortnight to find a new home after new managers took over the three-year lease at the Coppertops pub in Oldbury Road, St John’s, today on a three-month trial basis.

During a meeting at the pub, former manager Tracey Franklin, Megan’s mum and Grace’s grandmother, held talks with representatives of the pub’s owners, Westbourne Leisure Ltd.

During the meeting, Neil Tooth, Westbourne’s operations manager, said he would have the locks changed if Tracey Franklin did not hand back the keys.

But Mr Tooth said Miss Franklin should never have been living there in the first place and the pub had been losing money “hand over fist”.

Westbourne have been covering the cost of utility bills while Miss Franklin has been paying the council tax.

Mrs Franklin had been running the pub since April 28 and her daughter moved into the flat the following month.

The situation was made even more awkward when the new managers, Marc and Pauline Johnson, arrived from Birmingham today to take over the pub and move in, with some of their belongings in their car.

Mr Johnson said: “We were expecting to move in. It’s not the best situation.” However, he said Megan and her daughter could stay for the time being as he only needed one of the five upstairs rooms.

He said: “I wouldn’t throw a baby out on the street.”

Miss Franklin was written to by Westbourne on October 9 telling her she had to move out by October 24.

She said: “I’m annoyed and angry. They don’t care.

“They don’t care that my baby is constantly ill because they haven’t fixed the windows. It is so cold.

“This is the first time we have ever met the people from Westbourne. I need to find somewhere else to live. This is a total shock for me. I was expecting it but not so soon.

“It’s alright for the people from Westbourne. They have a home to go to."

Miss Franklin said she did not pay rent as no formal tenancy agreement had been reached between her and Westbourne.

She added: “They just give me two weeks notice and tell me to deal with it.”

She now hopes to meet with a housing officer from Worcester City Council tomorrow with a view to sorting out alternative accommodation.

Her mum, Mrs Franklin, said she now had no job. She said: “They have just sacked us and we have to get all our stuff out. We were fighting to keep this pub going.”

Mr Tooth said Mrs Franklin and her husband John were a “holding couple” and were always told they were running the pub only until Westbourne got another tenant in.

He said: “I told them we had another tenant and he was coming in today. They have known for the last two months we were looking to get another tenant in.”

He said the living arrangements with Miss Franklin had been arranged between her and a previous manager and would not have been agreed by one of their own managers.

He said: “We have done everything we can. She is living there rent free. She doesn’t pay anything towards the bills. We have been paying the bills and we have given her two weeks’ notice.

“The pub is losing money hand over fist. We need a cou - ple in it who are going to push it, drive it and make it a success.

“We are committed to this pub as long as it is making a profit, like any business. We want the community to support it.

“As far as we’re concerned, she isn’t supposed to be living there."