Villagers have been left ‘gobsmacked’ over plans that emerged during the festive period to turn a previously ‘well-used’ pub into a large house.
Hawthorne Leisure is seeking planning permission to convert Horringer’s former Beehive pub into a four bedroom house with double garage.
Residents have criticised the proposal and are calling on St Edmundsbury Borough Council to reject it.
Martin Evans said the family-run Beehive had always been ‘busy and popular’, but had remained closed since Greene King sold it last year.
‘Up in arms’ about the proposal, he said: “We lost our police station last year and now stands two houses. The post office has gone and now one of two pubs looks like it will have a similar fate. What’s next?”
In his objection, Peter Crofts said: “Alternative facilities are not available in Horringer. The existing Six Bells PH has its own distinctive offer and clientele and has always operated successfully alongside the Beehive.”
Geoff Gow, chairman of the Horringer Good Neighbour Scheme, said the Beehive was ‘always very successful’ and had won ‘countless awards’ for its hospitality and food.
Following the outcry from residents, the borough council has extended the deadline for objections, due to end three days ago, to January 26.
“It has all the hallmarks of being slipped under the table over the Christmas and New Year period, which leaves a bad taste in your mouth,” said Mr Gow.
Hawthorne Leisure declined to comment.
To view the application online, visit https://planning.westsuffolk.gov.uk/online-applications/ and use reference DC/14/2316/FUL.