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Public outcry forces park pub plan rethink
1:00pm Monday 24th March 2014 in Local News
PLANS to build a pub in a popular Hadleigh park have been put on hold after councillors bowed to public pressure.
Castle Point Council’s cabinet pulled out of talks with brewery chain Greene King over moves to allow a new Hungry Horse pub and restaurant in John H Burrows Recreation Ground.
The decision follows after an enormous public outcry over the proposal, including a 1,000-signature petition handed in to council leader Pam Challis.
Alf Papworth, who leads the Solby Estate Residents Association, and fronted the campaign said her regarded as was a terrific community victory as well as a personal success.
Mr Papworth, 80, of Ashdown Crescent, said: “We have done a lot of campaigning over the years, and when the people of Hadleigh asked for our help, we were glad to step in.
“We did our best to get leaflets in as many places as possible and just about everyone in the town knew about the campaign.
“I don’t think the council will try this sort of thing again. The backlash would be too great and people would boycott it if anything was ever to happen.”
Norman Smith, Tory councillor responsible for economic development and business liaison, told the cabinet he felt granting permission for the pub “would not be right”.
He said field’s revamp should need to be looked at again as part of an overall strategy for all the parks in the borough.
He added: “When we take everything into account, it becomes clear that this is a decision that will impact upon a number of people.”
Fellow councillors Godfrey Isaacs and Colin Riley said they felt the right decision been reached.
Mr Riley, Tory councillor for Victoria ward, added: This is a public park and it belongs to the public. I’m glad we can move forward and make a more in-depth plan.”
A spokesman for Hungry Horse, said: “We are disappointed there will be a delay and we will await to hear the council’s decision in due course.”
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