Villagers at Gisburn have welcomed the long-awaited go-ahead for their only pub to reopen.
Disagreements between council planners and the pub’s new owners had delayed plans to refurbish the Grade Two listed White Bull, which has been closed since last November.
But now the Heineken subsidiary Star Pubs and Bars has been granted consent by Ribble Valley Borough Council for what is described as “a complete and sympathetic refurbishment.”
Building work is planned to start on October 6th and the pub is scheduled to re-open in mid-November.
“Everybody is pleased that the council has listened to what people in Gisburn were saying,” said Gisburn Festival Hall secretary David Waters, who campaigned with other villagers and Nigel Evans MP and urged the council to approve the plan so the pub could reopen.
“It will be a place for people to get together socially, which is what’s been missing.
“A village pub needs to attract people from outside to be sustainable, and it will attract visitors and boost other businesses.”
Star Pubs and Bars will spend £300,000 on the refurbishment, and another £80,000 will be spent by new lessees on fixtures and fittings.
Improvements will include a more stylish seating/dining area, a new back bar, a more attractive entrance from the car park, and better letting rooms and function room.
Features such as the traditional slate and wooden floors, alcoves and large garden will all be retained.
Chris Moore, property and strategy director of Star Pubs and Bars, said: “I would like to thank the many people who have supported us over the months especially local MP Nigel Evans and David Waters.
“I look forward to the pub reopening and raising a celebratory pint.”