Last orders for Suffolk pub

LAST orders could be called for the final time at a village pub after planning officers agreed it should be converted into a house.

Richard Smith

LAST orders could be called for the final time at a village pub after planning officers agreed it should be converted into a house.

Villagers had fought to save The Swan in Alderton, near Woodbridge, but any lingering hopes of survival look set to be dashed next week.

Suffolk Coastal's development control sub committee will decide whether it can be turned into a house on January 7 - and the authority's officers are recommending it should be.


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The Swan has tried to increase trade by offering takeaways, quiz and bingo nights and music/karaoke events. It has been redecorated and marketing initiatives have included new signs.

It has been owned by Peter Saxon since 2004, and he says he has made every effort to keep the business viable.

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But the pub, which was given permission in 1997 to become a house, has suffered from declining trade and it has been for sale since May 2007.

Planners admit it would be “extremely undesirable” to lose The Swan. However, it would be difficult to justify refusing the application considering that the pub has been marketed and there have been no formal offers.

Alderton Parish Council objected to the plan and councillors said: “If this application is approved and The Swan becomes a private dwelling, it will be lost to Alderton and Bawdsey forever.”

Bawdsey does not have a pub and villagers use The Swan. The parish council said the area was vibrant and Bawdsey councillors added: ''The customer base is potentially very large when you take into consideration the two villages of Alderton and Bawdsey and the ever increasing passing tourist trade through to Bawdsey Quay.

''Further extensive, mixed housing developments have also recently been approved in both villages. The Swan has the added attraction of being able to offer chalet holiday accommodation, something which would undoubtedly increase trade if marketed well.''

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