Historic Bradford pub’s revamp ‘ruins interior’

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ENGLISH Heritage and the Victorian Society have restated their opposition to resubmitted plans to alter the inside of a Grade II listed former public house.

Aftab Ali has applied for permission to remove a partition wall between the main bar and front snug at the Cock and Bottle in Barkerend, Bradford, which has fixtures and fittings dating back to the 1800s which are the main reason for its listed status.

The applicant also wants to put in three new windows, which are not being opposed.

A report to Bradford Council’s planning panel, which meets next Wednesday, states that works already undertaken inside the building and those being proposed in the planning application “very seriously compromise the significance of the interior of the listed building”.

The applicant has argued the alterations are needed to allow the building to open as a restaurant.

The planning department is recommending the plans are approved and be referred to the Secretary of State for further consideration.

Previously approved planning applications relating to the Cock and Bottle, including for the same scheme before planners next week, are subject to ongoing judicial review in cases brought by the Campaign for Real Ale, which requested that the decisions be quashed. Judgments are pending.

Meanwhile, a Commons debate is to be held next Tuesday on pub companies after Labour accused the Government of “dragging its feet” over moves to halt pub closures.

The opposition accused the coalition of failing to introduce a statutory code aimed at protecting publicans amid complaints they were being exploited by large firms.

The Government held a consultation on a code but held off putting it in place after deciding to consider the huge number of responses. It is estimated 26 pubs are closing every week.