THE site of a former village pub is to be redeveloped for housing despite substantial opposition from village residents.
The application was put forward at The Headless Woman on Tarporley Road in Duddon by Dunham-on-the-Hill based McClements and McClements.
The developers told planning officers at Cheshire West and Chester Council they were seeking approval for a change of use and conversion of the pub to a single four-bedroom dwelling with eight new homes on the site, four of which would be affordable.
Duddon Parish Council objected and raised 14 detailed concerns arguing the village school was already full and there was no need for additional homes in the area.
They claimed the conversion of the pub would kill the community and there would be no centre for community activities.
Tarvin and Kelsall ward councillor John Leather (Con), who called the application in to the borough’s planning committee, suggested the housing would be overdevelopment and out of character.
He felt the pub could be used as a community shop.
Local people, he told the committee, were ‘virtually unanimous’ that the pub should not be lost to the community.
Residents put in 20 objections and claimed the pub had only been closed to make way for the development and not because it was unprofitable.
For the developers, agent Amber Johnson said the pub had been marketed since February 2011 and was no longer a viable business.
Principal planning officer Claire Coombs told the committee the previous landlord had advised the pub was not viable.
“If the pub closed due to lack of support from the community, why will anything else work?” asked Cllr Jill Houlbrook (Con, Upton).
Cllr Alex Black (Lab, Hoole) pointed out the development would see four affordable homes in the rural area where they were needed.
Councillors voted unanimously to give the development their approval.