A CAMPAIGN has been launched to save an historic village pub near Malvern which is under threat of being converted into a house.
Hundreds of residents in Callow End have got behind the Save the Old Bush Inn campaign as fears in the village grow over the future of the pub on Upton Road.
The doors to The Old Bush Inn have been shut for the last nine weeks and campaigners are concerned it could go close for good as they believe the new owner is looking to turn the pub and its garden into a housing development.
Coun Tom Wells, county councillor for the area, said its closure would have a big impact in Callow End as he described it as one of the village’s ‘prize assets’.
“The pub has been in place for the best part of 150 years and it has been very much part of the fabric of our community for all that time,” he said.
“Nine weeks ago the pub closed and this was as a result of someone buying the pub as a piece of real estate to build housing on the site within the gardens and convert the pub itself into a house.
“But that isn’t what the village community want and that’s why we have set up a massive campaign.”
About 140 people packed into Callow End Village Hall for a meeting last Monday (October 6) where parish councillors and villagers voted in favour of bidding to make the pub a ‘community asset’.
An application is set to be submitted to Malvern Hills District Council this week and if successful, the status would restrict a developer from changing the use of the pub for the next five years.
Coun Wells, who is leading the project, said the process has created a ‘buzz’ in the village as they could end up owning the pub and he believed it could lead the way for other communities doing the same.
“Out of what looks like a very negative circumstance, with the village looking like it might lose one of its prize assets, it could turn out to be a phoenix from the fire,” he said.
“Over the years the pub has been successful and I am confident that in the right hands the pub will have a very sustainable future.”
Coun Wells also urged anyone who was interested in supporting the campaign to call him on 07702 996203.