Pub in Huntingdon turned down for special status after bid to save site from developers

The Sun pub, Hartford Road, Huntingdon.

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

A bid to save a former pub in Huntingdon from redevelopment by nominating it as an asset of community value has been turned down by Huntingdonshire District Council.

The Sun, in Hartford Road, closed in 2014 and since then developers have been applying to the district council to redevelop the building to make way for flats on the site.

In an attempt stop any potential development, the Campaign for Real Ale’s (CAMRA) Huntingdonshire branch attempted to have the pub listed as a community asset last month.

Paul Moorhouse from CAMRA told The Hunts Post: “Making a building a community asset is a good way of saving it from developers. The Sun pub was a good community pub when it was open and it provided a service for those in the area which is why we wanted it to become a community asset.”

Despite a recommendation from Huntingdon Town Council to save the pub, it was decided last month by a panel of district council officers that it will not be viable to run as a public house again.

In a report regarding the decision, the officers noted: “The panel does not think it is realistic to think that this will happen within the next five years or that there is any other use that is likely to further the social wellbeing or interests of the local community in this timescale.”

Following the unsuccessful nomination CAMRA is now looking at ways to appeal the decision.

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Mr Moorhouse added: “I don’t know why the council refused our application. The pub has only been closed for just less than two years and normally places that are turned down have been closed for much longer.”

The organisation has said that pubs that are sold on to new owners are often on the market for a year before being bought and in the case of The Sun there was not enough time for this to happen following the refusal of planning permission.

“We think this pub could have been viable again and since the council turned down a planning application for the site last year so this would have been a good option to stop it from being turned into flats.”