Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Southend West, Cllr Julian Ware-Lane, is backing CAMRA’s wish for community pubs to be protected

CAMRAjulian ware-laneppcCAMRA are saying: Our community pubs matter and deserve to be protected.

However, weak planning laws in England are failing to protect them. This weak planning system is contributing to the closure of 31 pubs a week in the UK: two pubs are converted to supermarkets alone every single week.

Pubs currently fall within the A4 planning use class. This means they can be converted to any of use classes in the table on the right, or even demolished, without planning permission or any community consultation. The current situation is ludicrous and is encouraging the loss of pubs.

At the end of 2013 Cllr Ware-Lane submitted a motion to Southend-on-Sea Borough Council, hoping that it would signal a desire by the council to protect its community pubs. (See https://warelane.wordpress.com/2013/12/13/my-motion-on-community-pubs/)

Julian says: “Pubs are disappearing across the country, and our borough is no stranger to this phenomena. Pubs can be demolished without planning permission; they can also be converted without having to seek permission. Our pubs could easily become betting shops or cafes, for example.”

“People are concerned about a loss of community identity. The required law change only means that planning consent must always be sought. This does not prevent pubs being converted or demolished, but it does mean that community leaders will have a voice in the matter” added Julian

“The Government’s Localism Act did nothing to address the issue. Local Authorities need the tools to protect their communities.”

The Facts

Pubs support over 1 million UK jobs and inject an average of £80,000 into their local economy each year.

31 pubs close every week.

Research by CAMRA found that 2 pubs are converted to supermarkets every week between January 2012-2014.

69% of all adults believe that a well-run community pub is as important to community life as a post office, local shop or community centre.*

75% of all adults believe that pubs make a valuable contribution to life in Britain.**

*TNS CAPI Omnibus Survey June 2010 **TNS CAPI Omnibus Survey June 2012

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