Covenham pub housing plans ‘recommended for refusal’

Campaigners celebrating in April 2016 after the developer's appeal was rejected, following the refusal of his plans five months previously.
Campaigners celebrating in April 2016 after the developer's appeal was rejected, following the refusal of his plans five months previously.

A developer’s plans to convert a village pub into housing has been recommended for refusal ahead of next week’s planning meeting.

Julian Bland, represented by agent DesignQube, wants to convert the New Plough pub in Covenham St Bartholomew into three new homes.

Mr Bland previously attempted to build four new homes on the site but his plans were rejected in November 2015, with a subsequent appeal being dismissed just a few months later in April 2016.

Ahead of ELDC’s planning committee decision next Thursday (July 5), a report has been published which states: “The NPPF (National Planning Policy Framework) and the Council’s adopted and emerging plan policies take the loss of community facilities and pubs in villages very seriously.

“On the basis of the information available it is considered that it has not been adequately demonstrated that there is no longer a need for the pub, that it is no longer viable in the long term, and that it cannot be sold as a going concern.”

Senior planning officer, Rachael Needham, has recommended that planning committee members refuse the application at next week’s meeting.

A senior property manager for ELDC has valued the property at approximately £150,000-£175,000, net of VAT and acquisition costs.

Meanwhile, the Covenham Plough Community Hub group is still trying to prevent the building from being lost to housing - and instead wish to run the building as a pub/restaurant alongside a small shop and a function hall for the benefit of the local community.

The group will be holding their second village fete on Saturday July 14 from 10.30am at the field near St Mary’s Church, Covenham.

There will be a car boot sale, tug-of-war, archery, Tom Woods bar, craft stalls, Louth Bee Keepers, and more.

This will include a dog show starting at 1pm. Entry forms can be found online at www.covcom.co.uk or you can sign up on the day.