Plans to convert vacant Hastings pub into flats

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Developers have put forward plans to convert a vacant pub in Hastings town centre into housing, writes local democracy reporter Huw Oxburgh.

In an application submitted to Hastings Borough Council, developers are seeking planning permission to create eight new flats by redeveloping The Royal George, which is on the corner of Station Road and Devonshire Road.

According to the applicant, the building is no longer viable as a pub and has been vacant for six of the last ten years. It was most recently vacated in July 2019 and has been empty since.

In a design and access statement, submitted as part of the proposals, a spokesman for the applicant said: “The public house has been under the same ownership for over ten years, during which time various attempts have been made to lease the building and create a successful business as a drinking establishment. 

“However, despite being leased to three separate tenants, each defaulted on rent payments and vacated after a short period due to the building being unsuitable and unviable for a public house use.”

The statement goes on to argue that the redevelopment would bring a town centre building back into use. 

The proposals would see new development built on top of the vacant existing building, both extending the second floor and creating a smaller third floor.

This would make space for four one-bedroom flats and four two-bedroom flats, the applicant says.

As the development is for fewer than ten units, the proposals do not need to include any affordable housing. 

No new parking would be included within the scheme, although the applicant argues its sustainable location makes it “an ideal location for accommodating a car free housing scheme.” 

A spokesman for the applicant said: “Overall, the proposed development would boost the supply of housing within a highly sustainable location and in the absence of demonstrable harm or any conflict with national or local planning policies, planning permission should be granted.”

For further details of the proposals see application reference HS/FA/20/00028 on the Hastings Borough Council planning website.