A BOLD bid to breathe new life into an historic Evesham landmark has been given the thumbs up by district council chiefs.
Plans to transform Evesham’s Working Men’s Club on Merstow Green into retail premises, business and living space were backed by Wychavon District Council at a meeting last Thursday (March 5).
The historic site dates back to the 17th century but has been empty since October 2013 when the once popular club, established in 1879, was forced to close its doors despite two crisis meetings to save the ailing business.
But the new plans, submitted by Stuart Homer, would see part of the building and boundary walls demolished and a change of use applied.
Work to create an access road to the nearby car park will take place in front of the Trumpet Inn and the proposal drew criticism from the pub’s owners.
Bruce Benyon, operations manager of Hook Norton Brewery who own the Trumpet Inn spoke out against the application at the meeting.
“I think this will leave us with nothing at the front of the pub and as one of the last pubs in that area of Evesham, do you really want to make it even less attractive?.” he said.
“This is something we really don’t need and will compromise the business.”
Demolition of a modern extension of the building with the creation of 10 parking spaces will be built on the north side of the premises which is currently vacant.
Coun Jo Sandalls, said: “I personally hope there can be a compromise found but I welcome the approved application as it is an opportunity to improve the former Working Mens Club and will weighty benefit the town a lot more then it will harm.”
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