Plan to demolish pub to make way for new housing is turned down by officials

The Sun pub, Hartford Road, Huntingdon.

The Sun pub, Hartford Road, Huntingdon. - Credit: Archant

A developer’s plan to demolish a former pub to make way for new housing has been turned down by planning officials.

Ambury Developments applied to Huntingdonshire District Council for permission to knock down The Sun pub, in Hartford Road, and build a terrace of six houses in its place.

In its application to the council, agents acting for Ambury said: “The site was in use as a public house with manager’s accommodation at first-floor level until just over a year ago when the economic realities of a non-town centre location and limited external space caused it to close.

“The proposal would see the site utilised for residential development; reflecting the overwhelming majority of the immediate locality. The site lies within an area of residential development characterised by properties arranged in a linear manner.

“As such, the proposed development would sit comfortably with these neighbouring properties in a manner which would neither adversely affect residential amenity nor the existing character and appearance of the locality, part of the wider conservation area.”

But officials at the district council took a dim view of the plans, saying that the loss of the pub and its positive impact on the conservation area could not be supported.

The officer overseeing the case, Michelle Nash, said in her report: “The proposed development would see the loss of the existing public house from this area of Huntingdon thereby reducing the provision of this facility for the local community. “The application fails to appropriately demonstrate that there is insufficient community support for continuation of this facility or that reasonable steps have been taken to effectively market the property for its current use to establish whether there is any realistic prospect of maintaining the service or facility.”

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Huntingdon Town Council was among a series of objectors to the plans, with the authority calling the plans an “overdevelopment of the site”.

Ambury has six months in which to appeal the decision to the Planning Inspectorate.