A PUB in Amersham has been bulldozed less than 24 hours after it was sold to a new owner.

The Red Lion in Chestnut Lane closed suddenly on June 21, with the landlord being given notice to vacate immediately.

It was knocked down on Saturday morning, the day after a deal to sell it was signed.

Chiltern District Council, the authority responsible for planning matters in Amersham, says it is investigating but has no knowledge of the new owner's intentions for the site.

Howard Trevette raised concerns about the possible redevelopment of the site at an Amersham Town Council meeting last Monday, less than a week before it was bulldozed.

He said: "I do find the way they have operated to be cynical. It's obvious they were going to do it.

"It's a Victorian pub, it's a community pub and it could have been developed into a real family pub.

"In top Amersham there's only one or two pubs so it's very sad."

Fellow town councillor Howard Newton, a former regular at the pub, said: "It was all done very quickly and kept very quiet. We don't know who the new owners are."

Chiltern District Council spokesman Rachel Prance said: "The demolition of the Red Lion pub was reported to the council over the weekend and we took action as soon as we heard of it. Our officers have now been in contact with the contractor following the demolition works which took place on Saturday.

"To date we have not received any planning application for redevelopment of the site and have no knowledge of the new owner’s intentions for the site. If or when a planning application is submitted for redevelopment of the site the application would be advertised and considered in the usual way.

"Prior to demolition works, the planning department received a number of concerns regarding the future of the pub and concern that the property was for sale and the new owner intended to demolish the building. The Historic Buildings Officer did inspect the building and confirmed that the building was not of historic interest and not worthy of listing and as such as part of any proposed redevelopment of the site it would not be essential to retain the existing building."