Published: 12:00, 16 May 2021
| Updated: 20:40, 16 May 2021
The “most historic and picturesque part” of a village will be spoiled if a brewery builds two houses in a pub car park, residents fear.
Firm Punch Taverns has launched a bid to construct the four-bedroom homes next to the Huntsman and Horn in Broomfield, Herne Bay, after flattening some of its outbuildings.
The boozer’s landlord stresses the project will “ensure the viability” of the pub - itself a Grade II-listed property - for the future.
But the plans have sparked an angry response from neighbours living in Pond Cottages, a series of properties dating back more than 200 years.
Resident Jenny McGookin, 68, told KentOnline: “We were gobsmacked by the plans because it shouldn’t have been allowed to get through the front door.
“It will just change the look altogether. It’ll be like having two gold teeth in the middle of a mouth with nice teeth – they’ll look like imposters.
“I was thinking it would come to me moving because the developer could come back for more. When are they going to stop?”
Fourteen residents have objected to the plans since the application was first lodged with Canterbury City Council.
One argues that the street, which is in a conservation area, looks “almost identical” to pictures of the stretch from the 1800s, and that “the introduction of large dwellings does little to promote this”.
Writing online, villager Valerie Lilley urged the local authority to snub the scheme for this reason alone.
“It is the most historic and picturesque part of the village of Broomfield, with a row of Grade II-listed cottages next to the pub, which is also listed, and opposite the ancient village pond,” she explained.
“To build two modern houses in the middle of this row, whatever the design, would compromise the character of the whole area.
“It is the most historic and picturesque part of the village of Broomfield..."
“We do not need these two houses in a beauty spot when you consider the number of new houses already built, or being built, in Herne Bay.”
Documents show that the pub’s car park will be relocated behind the newbuilds, if they are given the go-ahead.
Punch stresses that the new homes have been designed to “complement the street scene along Pond Cottages”.
Is also says the Hunstman and Horn will remain in operation following the development, and “will continue to be served by 15 parking spaces”.
Supporting the scheme, the Watson family, who have run the tavern since 2009, said: “Punch have consulted with us on the proposal and carefully designed it to work alongside the pub.
“The plan would make the use of the land more efficient.
“In addition, the development will facilitate a significant capital investment in the pub by Punch which will ensure the viability of the pub for the future.”