From a club to a pub - East Cambridgeshire District Council agrees conversion of Lode social venue

New pub in Lode,

New pub in Lode, - Credit: Archant

A social club is to become a pub after conversion plans were approved by East Cambridgeshire District Council.

Craig Stretton’s plans to change the Lode Social Club into a pub were met with opposition from neighbours concerned over potential parking issues, noise, loss of privacy, safety, litter and traffic.

However, Julie Barrow, senior planning officer with the council, recommended approval in her report to Wednesday’s planning committee meeting.

She said “it is considered that the use of the site as a drinking establishment (pub) would not have any greater impact on residential amenity, transport and parking than the existing lawful use as a social club.

“The proposal ensures that the site remains as a community facility.”

The club has been closed for a number of months while works are carried out to alter and extend the premises in accordance with planning consents already granted.

The parish council were concerned about there only being four car parking spaces on-site at the front and said this is “quite inadequate” because the building would be more “widely available to the public” and would be serving meals.

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It also commented: “Since the last pub closed many years ago, and the social club two years ago, there has been a lack of a place for villagers to meet over a drink. There is therefore a desire amongst many villagers for a pub somewhere in the village.”

Ms Barrow said in her report: “It is considered the day to day activities of the premises would be broadly the same if the site were to operate as a social club or pub.”

She said existing conditions relating to noise and opening hours could be carried forward.

She agreed there is limited parking on site but pointed out that is already the case and it would not be materially different if it were a social club or a pub.

Councillors agreed approval by six votes to three.