DELIGHTED residents have won a reprieve in their bid to prevent time being called at their village pub.
The Davenport Arms at Calveley looked doomed to be demolished to make way for housing.
But villagers staged a protest when planners paid the pub a site visit.
Now they are celebrating success when they heard a plan to go ahead with the demolition had been overturned.
Cllr Chris Thorley, chairman of the development control panel of Crewe and Nantwich Borough Council, who headed the site visit, said: 'Our planning officer recommended that the scheme to knock down the pub to make way for houses should go ahead.
'But after visiting the site and listening to the views of local people, we have overturned that decision.
'I personally feel that every effort should be made to retain rural facilities wherever possible.
'The local people pointed out that if the pub went there would be no communal facilities whatsoever in their village, and that they would have to walk along the very dangerous A51 Nantwich-Chester road to pubs some distance away if they fancied a drink.
'I understand the pub has not been doing very well in recent years, but I went inside and found it to be a very pleasant. With some effort it could be made into a very nice place.
'Villagers at Winterley faced a similar problem with their local, the Holly Bush Inn and their fight to keep it open has succeeded.
'I very much hope the same will happen at the Davenport Arms.'
Calveley resident Ed Smith, spokesman for a group of villagers who have been campaigning to save the pub said: 'I am delighted. There has been a pub on the site since the 18th Century. I have been enjoying a pint there for 30 years.
'I don't know if the present landlord wants to keep it going, but I know of a couple who would be keen to buy it if it went on the open market.
Calveley Parish Council also opposed the demolition. Cllr Rob Konieczny said: 'I am relieved that councillors were thorough enough to come and see the site for themselves. They listened to what people had to say.'
Tarporley car dealer Malcolm Rose had applied to the council to redevelop the site to build five houses.
He declined to comment, but landlord Mick Merrick said: 'We have not yet decided on any future course of action. But Mr Rose and myself have a meeting set up with the architects and our agent tomorrow when we will decide where we go from here.'
MrMerrick, whorunsthepub withhiswifeJan said earlier: 'Since we took over five years ago, when the pub was actually shut down, we have tried to build it up but trade is still slack.'