‘Nail in coffin of variety’: Homes to replace Red Lion

View - The Red Lion in Haddenham
View - The Red Lion in Haddenham

A popular Haddenham pub is to be converted into three homes after receiving planning approval through appeal.

The Red Lion has not been open for a year but villagers are upset by the plans and the prospect of losing the pub forever.

Parish councillor Richard Moore said: “It’s another nail in the coffin of variety. The pub had seen better days.

“If someone else had brought it they could have really made something of it in terms of a cafe, brasserie, bar, restaurant.”

The pub suddenly closed last year and it is believed the owners left due to the large rental fees being asked of them. The application, approved by the planning inspector, will see the pub converted into a home with a further two built on the grounds of the existing car park.

Mr Moore added: “I used to go in there maybe once a week in the summer time.

“To sit out there on the terrace and have a glass of beer in the evening was very pleasant.

“To a certain extent these things happen. We have got to move on. In this village of 5,500 people there isn’t a good restaurant.

“It’s unbelievable.”

There have been three applications for changing the pub including one to completely demolish it.

The plans met with particular displeasure from the parish council and villagers. They argued that despite it not being the most attractive of buildings it made no sense to get rid of somewhere which is sited on conservation land.

Council vice-chairman David Truesdale echoed Mr Moore’s sentiments.

He said: “It’s not just about the building it’s about having a mix of uses.”