Derelict Crimea Tavern pub to be bulldozed as council agrees to buy it for £1.2m as part of regeneration plan

A former pub in Yorkshire is to be demolished after senior councillors agreed to buy it for £1.2m as part of regeneration plans.

A meeting was told the Crimea Tavern, in Castleford, would be a “blight” on attempts to turn the town’s riverside into a visitor attraction if it was allowed remain standing. The pub has been a target for anti-social behaviour and vandalism since it closed in 2009.

Wakefield Council has secured £23m of government Town Deal funding to revamp buildings and open spaces next to the river Aire and in the town centre. Cabinet members also approved the “strategic acquisition” of properties on Aire Street, Savile Road and Carlton Street, to allow work to begin.

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Similar acquisitions have already taken place, the details of which remain confidential. The Crimea site is not part of the Town Deal programme but it will form part of a separate project.

The derelict former Crimea Tavern pub, on Savile Road, Castleford.The derelict former Crimea Tavern pub, on Savile Road, Castleford.
The derelict former Crimea Tavern pub, on Savile Road, Castleford.

Michael Graham, cabinet member for regeneration and economic growth, said: “It’s great to see this project moving along. We know it has been challenging to acquire buildings in the timescales that we set out.

“It’s great to see it moving along, and the inclusion of the Crimea Tavern, because we have got a really great project down that riverside to turn it into a real destination and an amazing green space that people can enjoy. The Crimea Tavern would have been a blight on it.”

Demolition is expected to start in autumn 2024.

A report recommending the purchase said: “Securing a long-term solution to this site has been an objective of the council for some time, and recent discussions with the owner have identified an opportunity to take control of the site to ensure this.”

Council leader Denise Jeffery previously said the cost of boarding up the site to keep out intruders was a burden on taxpayers.

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