PLANS to create a new family restaurant and pub in a Hadleigh park could be put on hold following public outcry.
Campaigners are celebrating after officers at Castle Point Council recommended the authority take another look at the plans for John H Burrows Recreational Ground in Rectory Road.
The proposals would see the run-down Hadleigh Hall and WRVS Hall demolished and replaced with a new community hall, sports pavilion, games area and outdoor exercise equipment.
However, more than 1,000 people signed a petition against the scheme, which included plans for a Hungry Horse restaurant and pub.
The petition prompted the council to holdaweek-long public consultation last month.
The council claims most people were in favour of the scheme.
Officers have now recommended the plans be looked at again by councillors as a part of a new management strategy for all of the borough’s leisure facilities.
Alf Papworth, chairman of the Solby Estate Residents’ Association who started the petition, said: “You can’t imagine how happy I am. I’m absolutely over the moon because this needed to be won. I think people will be really relieved following this news because they were outraged when it came out.
“Apparently it’s going to be thrown out next week so I am glad the council has finally listened to us. I just want to thank everyone who signed the petition.
“The Echo has helped us fight our corner and we are very grateful indeed.”
Mr Papworth is now looking to apply for £750,000 of lottery funding to try and restore Hadleigh Hall.
Councillors are also calling for the council to look into plans to refurbish the building themselves and have a private company take over.
The matter will be raised at a cabinet meeting on March 19.
Colin Riley, councillor responsible for environment and street scene, added: “We are delighted. Clearly this has not been investigated thoroughly enough.
“Once you take off all the money that will be spent on the new facilities, Greene King would only spend £200,000 for a 99 year lease, which obviously is a good deal for them, but is it good for the people of Hadleigh?