High turn-out for public meeting as fight to save Chipping Sodbury pub continues

January 30 2018

MORE than 90 residents attended an open meeting as part of the campaign to save a Chipping Sodbury pub.

MORE than 90 residents attended an open meeting as part of the campaign to save a Chipping Sodbury pub.

They were given an update on the status of a planning appeal regarding the Tern Inn, which faces demolition to make way for 26 new flats and a cafe.

The future of the Heron Way pub has been in doubt since the outline application was made to knock down the inn.

More than 300 objections were submitted to South Gloucestershire Council planners, as well as petitions against the development, with the council ultimately rejecting the proposal.

Among the grounds for the decision were the loss to the community of the pub and a car park, the effect on the “vitality and viability” of local shops and increased congestion on surrounding roads due to the loss of parking.

The scale of opposition also led to the pub - and the car park which is used by customers of local shops and parents of children at Raysfield School - being declared an asset of community value (ACV).

That gives the community six months to put a bid together if the landowner ultimately decides to sell.

However, an appeal against the decision was made by agents acting for applicant Mark Lewis.

Despite a delay in the process due to missing documents, the appeal eventually became valid and opponents are now waiting for a date for the inquiry to be set.

Ken Thomas, chairman of the  Birds Residents’ Group, was pleased at the turn-out for the recent public meeting.

He said: “This shows the strength of support in our campaign to save the Tern Inn and car park.”  

Those at the meeting heard about a vision for the future of the pub and learnt about funding for a proposed bid for it in line with its ACV status.

It is now planned to create a newsletter for local households, with information on how to pledge support.

Although the pub had continued to trade when the application was submitted, it closed in June when the lease expired and was subsequently boarded up. Despite the setback, campaigners are still determined to see it re-opened.