Clapton locals were celebrating this weekend after plans to demolish a cherished pub were withdrawn.
Residents had mounted a campaign to stop the owner of the London Tavern on Rendlesham Road building a five-storey building in place of the pub.
It was decided on Thursday that the plans would not go ahead. Catherine Slade, the case officer in charge of the application at Hackney Council said that it had been “withdrawn by the applicant.”
Andy Lishak, 47, an avid snooker player and member of a snooker club based at the pub, said: “That’s really nice to hear. I hope this is the start of more good news to come in regards to other under-threat pubs.”
A planning application was made to demolish the 150-year-old pub and create nine “high end” flats as well as commercial space in the ground and basement levels in early January.
The Hackney Society, who routinely rally against changes to historical buildings in the borough, opposed the plans. A spokesperson for the society, Nick Perry, believed that although the flats may be of higher quality than the current 10 bedsits above the pub, the new flats would have “no pretension to serve the same local community”.
Owner James Kearns now says he wants a brand new pub, stating that he’ll “keep it the same as the original as possible,” with the same management and will include a refurbished bar, nine flats as previously planned and two offices for local businesses.
Kearns, 35, insisted that the pub will retain a “Victorian front,” but he plans the pub to be closed in the future.
Perry said: “When [he does] so, we hope [he] will be mindful of both the important architectural significance of the current pub building and the community value the pub has to the locals.”
A previous application for the site in 2011 which was declined by the council on the grounds that demolition “would result in a detrimental impact on the accessibility of services.”