Plans approved to help prevent last orders at Stratford district pubs - The Leamington Observer

Plans approved to help prevent last orders at Stratford district pubs

Leamington Editorial 7th Jun, 2024   0

PLANS are afoot to prevent more pubs in the district from being given their last orders.

A task group was set up by Stratford District Council in October with the aim of preventing “undue loss of public houses”.

It was formed in response to the important economic and social role pubs play across the district, particularly in more rural locations.

And the group is now recommending the go-head be given to a proposal to strengthen planning policy to help see more pubs retained and redeveloped rather than shut down in the future.




To this end, councillors are calling for a Public House Planning Advice Note to be published which clarifies for developers and planning officers the importance of pubs in the area and the policies they should be considering when developing in or near them.

The task group is also calling for the updated planning policy on public houses to be added to the new local plan to further strengthen their protection.


The policy will state pubs should be retained unless it can be demonstrated there is a more than one solid reason not to do so. Reasons could include there being no realistic prospect of it continuing for commercial or operational reasons, the land or property has been actively marketed for a similar facility, or there are overriding environmental reasons why the site must be discontinued.

At the moment only one reason has to be given.

According to Shakespeare Campaign for Real Ale, SDC’s planning department do not have a good record on pub closures in the area.

The CAMRA branch have made a comprehensive list of local pubs which have closed or are threatened with closure due to a proposed change of use.

These include the Cross Keys in Alcester. A planning application has been submitted for a change of use to three apartments. Planning permission has also been submitted to convert the Lord Nelson in Alcester into housing.

The ground floor of the Swan, also in Alcester, has been fully refurbished as boutique shops with hotel rooms above.

In Stratford, Oddfellows Arms has been vacant since 2015 with plans to convert the building into a shop and two flats. Paddock – previously the Salmon Tail in Stratford is closed with the future of the pub looking uncertain.

And villagers have battled for seven years in Great Wolford to prevent the Fox and Hounds Inn from being converted into a home.

Members of SDC’s Cabinet approved the measures to protect public houses when they met on Monday (June 3).

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