JD Wetherspoon pub will create up to 50 jobs in Ely if approved

JD Wetherspoon says its pub in Ely will create up to 50 jobs if given the go-ahead by planners.

The national pub chain also revealed it plans to invest £2m in converting the Grade-II listed former King’s Ely boarding house into one of its establishments.

Last week, we revealed proposals had been entered to East Cambridgeshire District Council for the work at 24, St Mary’s Street.

The news was met with mixed reaction on social media.

While some were pleased the pub chain plans would like to open in Ely, others did not welcome the news.

Commenting on the Ely Standard Facebook page, Anne Marie Taylor said: “Really hoping this doesn’t go ahead.”

Sarah Hammersley commented: “I fear for residents in close proximity.”

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Viv Bowles said: “What a shame, such a lovely building...”

The proposals submitted to East Cambridgeshire District Council request its change of use into a drinking and eating establishment as well alterations to the property and an extension to the back of the building.

Documents also say an outbuilding/garage on the site will also be demolished, ventilation equipment will be installed and there will be acoustic fences built in the courtyard to minimise sound.

The application’s design and access statement says: “The scheme we have put forward seeks to bring the listed building back into use and provide it with a new purpose.

“Due to the nature of a ‘Public House’ most of the interesting spaces within the interior of this listed building will be used by customers and therefore its historic value can be appreciated by the general public.”

It continues: “We believe that the interventions and alterations we propose, and the repair and preservation responsibilities which the owner will take on, outweigh the minor changes to the building’s fabric.”

Proposed trading hours are Sunday-Thursday 7am-11:30pm; Friday and Saturday 7am-12:30am. It may also open for an extra hour on occasions like Christmas Eve and Sunday before Bank Holiday Mondays.

King’s Ely bought the property at 24 St Mary’s Street in the 1980s but stopped using it four years ago. It was offered for sale at the end of 2018 and later bought by the pub chain.