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Anger over plan to demolish historic village inn

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A PLAN to demolish the historic Raven Inn at Glazebury and build 10 homes on the site has angered local residents.
The pub is said to date from the 16th century and while little of the original building has survived, it remains an attractive, black-and-while, half-timbered building on Warrington Road.
But it closed some time ago and developers Osborne and Co, in their application for permission to carry out the scheme say the building is not listed and is in a neglected, derelict and run-down state.
In their application to Warrington Borough Council, they say: “The demolition of the neglected and run-down Raven Inn provides an opportunity to redesign the frontage to Warrington Road and provides the street-scene with a new feature building.
“It is an old building, circa 16th century but that in itself does not mean that it should be kept for ever.
“Retaining the building is in any event not an option for viability reasons.
“The new development would bring the site back into active use.”
But nearby resident Neil Black said: “We were surprised it wasn’t a Grade 2 listed building and I think there was a plan to get it listed – obviously too late.
“A word used in the planning application is derelict. It is old, but certainly not that.”
Businessman Paul Taylor said: “It was a fantastic restaurant, – the best in the area in fact for the last 10 years. But since Bents expanded and improved its food offering, and the shopping traffic that hits their new roundabout at rush hour started causing so much chaos, it became quieter and quieter as it relied on passing trade as there’s no footfall in that area at all.
“Until the end I used to have lunches and occasional evening meals there but local pubs and restaurants are like public footpaths. You use them or lose them. People only have themselves to blame now it’s gone.
“I must say I’m very surprised it isn’t listed when you look at some of the local properties that are. Looks like those in charge of all that dropped the ball on this one, but it doesn’t change things. If you can’t get bums on seats in any establishment then you can’t keep it open. There’s more demand for housing in both Culcheth and Glazebury than for restaurants so it’s just evolution I suppose.”
The plan, which has yet to be presented to the borough council’s development management committee, envisages 10 homes – one detached, six semi-detached and three mews-style cottages
The Raven is locally listed – but this does not protect it from demolition.

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  1. The following objection has been submitted to the Warrington Borough Council:

    The Council’s own published Unitary Development Plan clearly GUARANTEES DENIAL, if your intent is proper; to adhere to what you have published:

    “Buildings and structures which, although not of national listed building status, are
    valued for their contribution to the local scene as good examples of local architectural
    styles or for their historic associations, will be included on a local list produced by the
    Council. Development proposals likely to have an adverse effect on a building or
    structure included on the Local List will [NOT BE PERMITTED] unless it can be clearly
    demonstrated that there are reasons for the development which [OUTWEIGH THE NEED TO SAFEGUARD] the particular local architectural or historic value involved, [AND THAT ANY DAMAGE IS THE MINIMUM NECESSARY] to enable the development to proceed.

    Notes:
    A. EXTREME historical value.
    This building, which may be even older than known, has direct ties via its builders (many unexplored) to King Henry VIII, Anne Boleyn, Charles Dickens, Robert Nixon, Thomas Blood, Thomas Cromwell, and numerous additional historic figures and events.

    B. If any development is allowed on this property, the existing landmark’s very limited footprint, at perimeter edge, certainly does NOT prevent the project.

    C. The Council’s published policy guarantees denial for the above reasons. This application is a perfect example of what the Council has stated that it must take responsibility to safeguard against.

    D. Anybody who takes an interest should voice their objections to the Council at:

    http://planning.warrington.gov.uk/swiftlg/apas/run/wphappcriteria.display?
    (Simply enter 2019/34186 when prompted for the Planning Reference)

  2. The Raven Inn is more integral to the heritage of the local area than would appear.

    By studying historic maps, an obvious, intentional relationship appears.
    The Raven Inn emerges as the literal centerpoint between two listed buildings, Hurst Hall and Holcroft Hall. It is located on a straight line drawn from one hall to the other, and is at the exact midpoint of that line.
    The line delineates an ancient road continued the path of existing Hey Shoot Lane from the Raven Inn on to Hurst Hall.
    The Raven Inn is closely tied historically to both halls by ownership and by location.
    All three were built and owned by the Holcroft family.

    Though the Raven Inn is not yet listed, it is in much better condition than the two listed buildings with which it helps to form an amazing historic framework.

    The Raven Inn is just as historically significant as the two listed halls, but is much less altered and much more intact than either of them.

    The Raven Inn is of national importance.
    Why? Because the Holcroft family had a powerful influence over the course of both English and Scottish national history, in royal, political, warfare, defense, financial, and religious terms.
    The Holcroft family, were involved with these three buildings for twelve generations from Middle Ages onward, as ther builders, owners and occupants.
    Proper scholarly research will undoubtedtly reveal many new and spectacular findings.

    For all of the reasons above, the Raven Inn is of absolutely immense value.
    To England, to Lancashire, to Warrington, to Culcheth, to Glazebury.

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