disabled access laws will force changes to Britain's first community-owned pub, the Beauchamp Arms in Dymock.

Because it is owned by the parish council, which bought the pub rather than see it close, the Beauchamp Arms qualifies as a publicly-owned building and is covered by the new laws.

The council says a disabled access ramp and a disabled toilet, featuring a radar key, will also have to be installed.

The new laws come into force next January.

The matter was discussed for the first time by the parish council at its meeting at the Ann Cam Primary School on Monday, but no costings have yet been drawn up.

Parish clerk Jenny Thick said: "I think there may be grants available. It's got to be done."

The parish council is to hold talks with Forest of Dean District Council to get more information

Under the new laws, every effort must be undertaken to ensure that public buildings offer disabled access.

At this week's meeting, the parish council also agreed to spend £33.50 for the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents to carry out an inspection of the village play area, to see how that too can meet the new regulations.

Parish councillor Marion Sandford said some work would probably be needed.

In Ledbury, the town council has held a number of discussions concerning the half-timbered Market House, where its meetings are held.

The 17th Century building, supported on wooden columns, does not currently offer disabled access. Suggestions have included putting in a lift and installing a live audio-visual or Internet link to the council chamber.