You may remember a short while ago I got all vexed about the imminent demolition of the Park End pub. I was upset by the fact that yet another pub was to be swept away to make way for yet more flats, and I was especially distraught by the loss of the fine Victorian building and fittings. To make my point I blogged again with pictures so you could see what I was getting so upset about.
The subject subsequently got covered in the Citizen. Despite the fact that it was too late to do anything about it as planning permission had already been passed, I felt it was good to air the grievance and, you never know, maybe something good would come of it.
Then, a week or so ago, I got a call from David Thomas, the Citizen reporter who wrote the original story. ‘The Park End is to stay open,’ he said, ‘apparently the front of the pub is listed so it’s too expensive to convert it to flats. Can I have a quote from you?’
I’m not used to being asked for quotes, so I floundered a bit. Basically I said ‘it’s a good thing’. The story was duly published on Friday 10 September under the headline Pub Rescued from Demolition. It confirms that the pub is not only to stay open but is applying to extend its hours. It also calls me a pub expert, which is nice, although my friends tell me this is a polite way of saying alcoholic.
So, let my joy be unfettered: good news indeed.
It’s odd though. When I initially looked into this I was told by both the Heritage Services at the City Council and the Civic Trust that the building was neither listed nor in one of the council’s conservation areas and, therefore, there was nothing that could be done to prevent the demolition. What could have prompted this u-turn?
And then, a couple of days ago, I was contacted by my ‘source’ who had originally tipped me off about the planning application. Apparently the developer is still proceeding with getting the planning conditions signed off so that he can demolish the pub.
It looks like whoever contacted the Citizen is either misinformed or telling porkies – the question is why?
If anyone knows anything about what’s going on I’d love to know…