Hawarden Estate loses appeal over plans to create visitor accommodation at historic village pub
The descendants of a former British prime minister have lost an appeal over plans to create new visitor accommodation in Hawarden.
Proposals to convert a Grade II-listed stable block at the historic Glynne Arms pub were originally submitted by the Hawarden Estate in September 2018.
The 200-year-old coaching inn is run by Charlie Gladstone, great-great grandson of 19th-century Liberal prime minister William Gladstone, along with his wife Caroline.
An appeal was lodged on the estate’s behalf in November last year as Flintshire Council failed to make a decision on the application, which would also have seen the creation of a shop, workshop facilities and extra parking.
But their bid to gain permission has now been rejected by a planning inspector as he said it would not protect the history of the buildings.
In his decision notice, Hywel Wyn Jones said: “Whilst ensuring sustainable new uses for buildings that have outlived their original use can provide a means of securing their preservation, in this case the scheme fails to demonstrate that the opportunity to preserve as much of the special features as possible has been grasped.
“Indeed, as Cadw has identified, there are opportunities in this case to enhance the building by instating original features and removing more recent, insensitive alterations that would appear to align with the proposed re-use of the building.
“I am mindful that the introduction of the proposed residential and commercial uses into the heart of the village would provide economic and social benefits to the host community and that such benefits are material to the consideration of the effects on a listed building.
“However, noting that no detail of the extent of such benefits have been provided, these considerations do not alter my findings on the unacceptability of the scheme.
“I conclude that the effect of the proposed works on the listed buildings and the conservation area would be unacceptable.”
The plans showed the former stable block would have been turned into short stay accommodation for patrons of the pub.
Other parts of the building would have been used to house businesses with links to its original use, such as a saddlers workshop.
Despite rejecting the appeal, Mr Wyn Jones has awarded costs against the council for failing to make a decision on the proposals.
He said: “In its appeal submissions the council point to shortcomings with the scheme, which may have been matters that the applicant would have sought to address with the council had it been advised earlier, rather than lodging the appeal.
“The council has not provided any evidence to lead me away from finding that the appeal could have been avoided had it determined the application, or otherwise advised the applicant of its concerns, in a timely fashion.
“In the circumstances the council’s failure to determine the application constitutes unreasonable behaviour which caused the applicant to incur the unnecessary costs of pursuing the appeal. Accordingly, I find that a full award of costs is justified.”
Liam Randall – Local Democracy Reporter (more here).
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