PLANS to build a garden room at the White Lion Pub in Kildwick by its owners have been rejected by councillors.

Craven District Council’s Planning Committee went against officer recommendation to approve the scheme and refused the application by Star Pub and Bars Ltd.

Members at the online meeting were told that the owners wanted to effectively enclose an outside seating area with a garden room at the pub, which is close to St Andrew’s Church and within the Kildwick Conservation Area. The extension would also include new steps, timber fence and timber boxed planters.

Its purpose was to ‘allow for a greater floor space for use by patrons of the public house so would continue the same use from the premises’.

But despite sympathising with the new owners and wanting to encourage new business, members instead sided with the ward councillor and a nearby resident who objected on the grounds it would impact on his living conditions.

Jim Cairney told the meeting he was objecting on the grounds of loss of light, and increased noise. He said there had been seven landlords at the pub since he had lived next door, he had no issue with the current landlord, he wished the pub to be a success, but the plans as they were were not acceptable.

Ward councillor Andy Brown said they all wanted to see the pub a success, but added that neighbours did have rights and the committee had to protect those rights.

He also had concerns about the use of the extension as a possible music venue and claimed once it was built, the council would have no control over the space.

Ideally, he said he would like to see the application approved, but with four conditions. They would include the use of roof slates on the extension to match those on the pub roof, the moving of the garden room a metre away from the neighbour, and the reduction of its height.

If the conditions could not be added, he would have no choice but to move refusal of the scheme, he said.

Planning manager, Neville Watson, said Cllr Brown was effectively trying to ‘re-writing the application by condition’ which was something he ‘simply could not do’.

“If the application is refused, that will give us the chance to come back with a new application, “ he said.

All but one of the councillors, including the chairman, Cllr Linda Brockbank, voted against officer recommendation and to refuse the application.

It was refused on the grounds of its adverse impact on the amenity of neighbours.