Plans to build a new pub on a site originally allocated for affordable housing next to a supermarket on the outskirts of Leek have been withdrawn.
Marston's Inn and Taverns submitted plans to Staffordshire Moorlands District Council for the erection of a public house/restaurant with associated managers; accommodation on land at Churnet Works, Macclesfield Road, Leek.
The application was due to be decided by the district council's planning committee yesterday, Thursday, July 17, but it was withdrawn.
It had been recommended for approval by the council's planning officers, despite generating opposition from residents, local business and Leek Town Council.
Hundreds of people have signed a petition against the building of the pub and restaurant and Leek Town Council has recommended refusal on the planning grounds of inadequate parking, issues of access, loss of houses originally planned for the site, and inadequate evidence of research into other venues for such a pub in town.
Councillor Pam Wood said: “I think they should be looking at buildings that already exist, like Wetherspoon did. It is quite out of town and there is a possible issue of drink-driving.
“They should be looking at filling buildings already in the town.”
Councillor John Povey said: “They have not demonstrated that they have looked at other buildings in the town.
“Having read their planning statement, I find it misleading in terms of there being no other such establishment in that area, when there are around a dozen.
“I would like to see this sort of pub being built at the marina planned for Leek.
“My other concern is the access they are proposing, which will be off Churnet Way.
“Vehicles coming out of Marston’s are not going to be able to see what’s coming over the bridge.”
Mrs Wood added: “I was at a meeting recently where we were scrabbling to find places to build houses, and yet this would be losing 52 mixed category houses – all for a public house.”
Mr Povey added: “I have nothing against them going into a building that needs re-opening, but this out of town pub will accelerate the closure of the traditional kind of pub in our town.”