Battle to save last village pub as plan for house is submitted

PUBLISHED: 07:59 28 June 2018 | UPDATED: 08:17 28 June 2018

Uttlesford District Council is expected to have the final say on the plan.

Uttlesford District Council is expected to have the final say on the plan.

Archant

White Roding residents are imploring Uttlesford District Council (UDC) to reject plans which could see the last remaining pub in the village shut.

An application to change the Black Horse Inn, in Chelmsford Road, into a residential property was submitted to UDC on April 3 and has been met by strong objections from many residents.

A planning statement prepared in support of the application argued that the pub was no longer financially viable, that there was a “clear” lack of demand for the pub, and the surrounding area “benefits from a number of viable community services, including public houses”.

This, Ian Taylor from DLP Planning Ltd said, meant the application was compliant with policies listed in the adopted Uttlesford local plan.

However, objecting to the plans, Dr Paul Allen, from White Roding, said: “The pub is the only one in the village, which has few amenities, and the closure of the Black Horse would see the heart of the village ripped out, with few other facilities available for the locals.”

Peter King, who lives in Chelmsford Road, said: “I do not accept that there is not a demand for the public house. I think most villagers will be horrified and sad at the prospect of losing the last village pub, and that many would continue to use it.”

Kerry Elliot is a member of a local book club which decided to meet at the pub regularly. She said: “It was a place for people to meet each other and one we all value. There is no-where else in the village where we will be able to continue to do this.”

Another resident said the application “effectively takes away forever our hope of having a village pub at the heart of the community”.

A UDC spokesman said a date had not yet been set for the planning committee to consider the application.

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