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Planning approval given to turn The Nags Head into a hotel
A LIVE music venue in High Wycombe which hosted the likes of The Sex Pistols and Fleetwood Mac will be turned into a hotel.
Planning permission has been given to convert The Nags Head in London Road, which has been empty for a year, into an 11 bedroom hotel.
The planning application was approved under powers delegated to the Head of Planning and Sustainability at Wycombe District Council.
It did not go to the planning committee.
The planning application, which includes a proposed lounge area, bar and restaurant, was from Salma Uddin who put in for a change of use from a public house to a hotel.
The venue has a rich heritage of live music- Ron Watts promoted The Nags Head in the 60s and became well known for putting on high calibre acts.
But complaints started last April after new tenants, Maria Paesano and her son, Marco Iorio, moved into the pub.
A noise abatement notice was served last May. On August 3, 2012 it was closed by Admiral Taverns, who owned it, and the tenants were removed.
The applicant applied for informal advice from WDC about the development, which was dealt with by Gemma Gearing, who concluded the change of use could be considered acceptable in principle as there are a number of pubs in the Ryemead Ward, which it resides in.
Trevor Snaith, ward member for Ryemead, said: “I’m totally disgusted with Wycombe District Council. We’ve had over 700 objections to the change of use.
“Myself and Ray Farmer asked for it to be referred to planning but under the process they have there, they can totally disregard and disrespect the views of the local ward members and make a delegated decision.
“I’m disgusted at the way Wycombe District Council treat the town and the residents of this ward.
“When so many people are against it, I would expect it to be brought before the planning committee. I will be asking questions at the full council meeting about it.”
Michael Tinton, who set up a petition to campaign to stop the application being given approval, said he is very disappointed.
He said: "The local community wanted to keep their music venue.
"There aren't many venues of that size in the town, which can host a small scale gig.
"Scorpio's is a life line for live music but it is a bit too small- you can't fit every type of band and every type of audience in there.
"The student's union at Bucks New University is also good but it only caters for a certain audience- students.
"There isn't any place like the Nags left in the town. It is such a shame it is going to be turned into a hotel."
Nick Sykes, spokesman for Wycombe District Council, said: "The council acknowledges that there were a number of objections on the Nags Head planning application and concerns were expressed by a ward councillor. However these were reviewed in the light of national and local planning policies and were given careful consideration before it was decided to grant permission for a hotel use.
“Whilst the application did not come before the full Planning Committee, the council followed the procedures it has in place before making a decision and it is not the case that the views of local ward members were disregarded.”
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