Green light for Northamptonshire pub to be converted into flats

Neighbours of The Manor pub, Brackley, raised objections to the plans due to current parking issues on the estate.
Neighbours of The Manor pub, Brackley, raised objections to the plans due to current parking issues on the estate. -Credit:Google

Plans to convert a vacant pub in a Northamptonshire town into flats have been approved by the council, despite multiple objections from the public.

The Manor pub, in Brackley, has now received permission from West Northamptonshire Council (WNC) to make internal changes to the building creating five separate flats within the existing walls. No on-site parking is proposed for the tenants.

According to plans, the building was out of use for several months before being put on the market for sale. After nearly two years with no offers made to take up the public house, the property was sold to the current owner who wished to convert the building.

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The Campaign For Real Ale (CAMRA) commented on the plans, raising their concern that some owners and developers will use the current nighttime economy crisis to seek change of uses for "short-term financial gain".

It added: "Our appeal to Local Planning Authorities is, please, stand firm and adhere closely to the national and local policies that protect community facilities like pubs.

"The public’s enthusiasm for pub-going will surely return undiminished once life is back to normal; new businesses will soon emerge to take the place of crisis casualties so we need to keep the pub stock essentially intact."

Eight objections to the plans were also submitted by members of the public who raised concerns with parking, the loss of the pub and works beginning on the property before planning permission was given.

One commented on the application: "The loss of The Manor as a public house has been a big hit on the local community and to now hear it's being turned into five residential units when there is already a massive shortage of parking on this end of Manor Road, especially since the new builds went up down Halls Lane, is ridiculous.

"I already have to park my vehicle on double yellow lines at night to try and get anywhere near my own house. Just doesn't make sense or logic that potentially a minimum of five more vehicles, possibly more, we are going to have to compete with."

A cycle store will be secured as part of the development within the yard area of the building. The Local Highways Authority said it was "satisfied" that a parking beat survey undertaken by the applicant shows there is enough on-street parking capacity for the flats.

The council confirmed its decision to grant change of use permission on May 2, subject to conditions.