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Plans for historic pub cause concern

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Plans to turn The Clock Tower Inn in Newbury into flats and retail space have prompted concern locally

PLANS to turn a Grade Two listed pub, established before 1858, into flats and retail space has evoked concern in Newbury.

The Clock Tower Inn, originally The Queen's Arms, on the Broadway, built circa 1800, originally as two shops, looks set to be turned into five residential flats with one retail unit on ground floor, under plans submitted to West Berkshire Council.

The chairman of the Newbury Society, Jeremy Holden-Bell, said: “We are losing on of the few pubs around that part of town, and with the major housing developments coming on that end of town, we are going to need them.”

The pub The Clock Tower Inn has always been close to the community, and when a charity bottle, containing about £50 was stolen from the counter, regulars held a whip-round to replace the money, but over the years, it has also courted a fair share of controversy: In 1990, then landlord Peter Sharpe was stabbed in the pub, and around the millennium, while MPs were considering banning the practice of renaming pubs it changed its name to Shenannigans.

It reverted to its old name in 2006 was refurbished in 2008, before finally shutting its doors in August 2009.

At the time, it was listed for sale with a guide price of £325,000.

A decision on the planning application is expected by November 23.

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