Dale Ingram, national pub planning expert, recently submitted her objection to the Dyke Pub’s owners planning application. A summary is provided here, and Dale’s full report can be seen on the council’s planning portal at http://bit.ly/dyke-pub-report

If you haven’t already, there is still time to object or comment on the plans. If you have already objected/commented on the plans, you can still submit additional objections as long as they raise different points from the previous one.

The application reference is BH2017/01917 on the BHCC planning portal at http://bit.ly/BH201701917

Summary of Dale’s report

The application fails to meet local and national policy in material ways and should be refused.

Dale’s report is 42 pages (without appendices) and fully references local and national planning policies, as well as legal cases. In brief, her arguments include the following:

Reasons the application is invalid:

  1. No Heritage Statement or Habitats Report have been submitted.
  2. The use as currently described in the application is inaccurate and the current mixed retail / residential use is unlawful. (Change of use from pub to retail was allowed as permitted development at the time the Dyke closed in September 2016, but change of use from pub with ancillary accommodation to retail with separate accommodation was not permitted development. Furthermore, Dale Ingram concludes that the retail use was merely a device to circumvent planning protection for the pub.) She concludes the only lawful use of the building in its entirety is A4 (pub). The proposal therefore significantly limits the building’s continued use as a pub for the benefit of the wider community, contrary to planning policies.

Reasons for refusal:

  1. The changes to the building harm the building’s architectural merit and consideration has not been given to heritage protection. There is no substantial public benefit to justify this.
  2. The scheme fails to deal adequately with car parking, cycle storage, waste and recycling, outdoor amenity space and minimum room sizes and head heights. No Travel Plan has been submitted.
  3. An accessible WC is included in the scheme, but no accessible entrance is provided for wheelchair users.
  4. The garden, ancillary accommodation and cold store are removed from the pub in the application, and the beer cellar and kitchen ventilation are not referenced. Without these elements, the proposal will not preserve a pub use which meets community needs.

The Dyke in its entirety was listed as an Asset of Community Value and the loss of a significant part of the ground floor and the alienation of all of the upper floors severely limits the opportunities for the business diversification in future to sustain the benefit of the Dyke in use as a Community Asset.

The consequence of this in the medium or long term is the complete loss of the Dyke in any format.