A CAMPAIGN to save a historic Cheshire pub for future generations is urging the public to have their say on plans to build on part of the land.

Those behind the Save the Holly Bush campaign in Little Leigh say the plans to build three five-bedroom homes on the pub car park and adjoining orchard would kill off any hopes they have about reopening it as a community asset.

An application for outline planning permission has been submitted to Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWAC) by Rob Jones on behalf of RJ Design (NW) Ltd.

Simon Appleton, who has been instrumental in the campaign for the past year, said he wanted the public to make their feelings known.

“Without a car park the pub cannot operate and therefore the group strongly opposes the planning application,” he said.

“Everyone will have their own reasons for making an objection.

“The application is contrary to the Little Leigh Design Statement which says, 'the area should be protected and enhanced'.

“The Holly Bush pub and buildings are Grade II listed and date back to the 17th century.

“The proposed development would mean a loss of trees and hedgerow and destroy an important habitat for the bats and owls.

“The orchard itself is also a rare old orchard of which there are very few left in Cheshire.”

Northwich Guardian: Simon Appleton is strongly opposing the plansSimon Appleton is strongly opposing the plans

Little Leigh Parish Council have also submitted their 'firm objection' to the plans.

In comments submitted to CWAC, the objection said: “Firstly, this proposed development is on land off Smithy Lane, Little Leigh and not in Dutton Parish.

“In fact, there is a proposed new access from Smithy Lane within the plans.

“The proposed site is adjacent to the Bartington Conservation Area and would be totally out of keeping with the historic Holly Bush public house and its setting.

“The Holly Bush Inn site is deemed an Asset of Community Value and is the subject of a Full Moratorium Order.

“The loss of the car park would be crucial to the future of the Holly Bush as a public house.

“This is not a proposed conversion of any kind but would be a new build development on what is greenfield land in the North Cheshire Green Belt.

“We consider that this would constitute inappropriate development in the Green Belt.”

You can view the plans on CWAC’s planning portal using reference 22/01579/OUT.