New bar faces crunch decision over future after battle with Liverpool Council

Paul Maloney working on his new pub in Garston
-Credit: (Image: Andrew Teebay Liverpool Echo)


A decision is to be made on the long-term future of a Garston bar after a long-running battle with Liverpool Council.

Web designer Paul Maloney and his wife Braidy submitted a change of use application to the city council to open their new establishment - Solomon’s Tap Room - on St Mary’s Road, Garston, last year. After being forced to resubmit their terms in March, Paul faced an uncertain wait despite hoping to open earlier this month.

Now, the local authority is to make a decision as to whether it approves of the new bar when its planning committee meets next week.

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Found in the former Stalbridge Hotel, the bar - which welcomed customers for the first time on May 4 despite not yet securing planning approval - focuses on craft beer as Paul and his family look to bring something different to the area. Named after butcher Solomon Fisher, for whose business the building now housing the tap room was built, the site is being converted from a guesthouse in its most recent guise.

Speaking previously, Paul expressed worry about facing a lengthy delay for a decision on planning permission, with applications not being processed until June owing to this month’s local elections. The business owner said he had already spent £5,000 alone on stock.

According to Liverpool Council’s planning committee agenda, the building is brick constructed with decorative detailing and brick piers at ground floor level. The application seeks full planning permission to change the use of part of the ground floor of the building from a guesthouse to craft bar in Sui Generis use class, together with associated external alterations including the addition of double doors to the front elevation.

The craft bar opening hours are proposed to be from 11am to 11pm daily.

Messages of support have been received by the authority for the application, including those who said it would be a “welcome addition to the area” and a “rejuvenation of a decaying building.” Another supporter wrote how a craft bar would benefit the area while another said: “We do not have any nice bars in the area where we can go and spend time with friends and families in a safe and enjoyable place.”

There is no off-site parking provision but the premises is located in a highly accessible location and given the small size of the proposed bar which is likely to mainly attract local trade, no concerns are raised in relation to impacts on the local network and parking.

A public objection was received on the grounds of potential crime issue associated with the proposed use. The report said: “While it is acknowledged that there may be anti-social behaviour and crime issues associated with drinking establishments, it is considered given the small scale of the proposal, siting of the development away from other pubs/bars in the district centre and proposed opening hours until 2300 hours would help to limit the potential for crime.”

The plans will be heard by city councillors on Tuesday June 4.

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