Shropshire Star

Houses and community centre plan for former Shropshire village pub

A former Shropshire village pub that was gutted by fire five years ago could be replaced by new homes and a community hall.

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The Swan, Waters Upton, closed in 2007 and was badly damaged by fire in 2015.

The Swan, in Waters Upton, near Telford, closed in 2007 and was devastated by fire in 2015. Parts of the former coach house dated back to 1843.

Now Telford & Wrekin Council has granted Alireza Zolghadr Mazleghani permission to build two semi-detached houses, three apartments and a multi-use community building on the site, on the east side of the A442 Long Lane.

Waters Upton Parish Council has requested that the pub’s surviving front face be retained. The Wolverhampton-based developer has said this will depend on its structural safety.

A design statement, submitted by MCD Construction Consultancy for Mr Mazleghani, acknowledged that previous attempts have been made to gain planning permission to build homes there. Some have been rejected as perceived “over development” and for lacking an “asset of community value” to replace the pub.

It says the houses, which will each have three bedrooms and two car parking spaces, will be adjacent to and designed in a similar style to the neighbouring Swan Court. Blueprints show the apartment and community hall building at the west side, at junction of Long Lane and River Lane, with 10 parking spaces.

“The front of the site where the existing ruins of the public house sit would have to be more conscientiously designed,” the statement says.

“There is a request from the parish council to retain the existing front elevation of the pub.

“However, the true extent of damage to the structure is not entirely understood, and a flexible approach to the design would have to be taken.”

Waters Upton parish councillors discussed the application at a meeting last year, and supported it, subject to conditions.

They said the inclusion of an ACV was “at the top of the list of priorities identified by the community”.

Their statement added: “Whilst there was some concerns expressed at the recent parish council meeting regarding the extent of development on the remainder of the site, and the number of car parking spaces that could be achieved with some re-design of the layout, the councillors were clear that the proposal should be supported, and open to some further discussion regarding the finer details.”

Fire broke out just before 1am on Friday, September 18, 2015, and firefighters from seven stations around Telford and Shropshire were called to the scene. Police later said they suspected arson.

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