South Norwood residents have expressed concern and disappointment after the Co-op abandoned plans to open a supermarket in a converted pub on Woodside Green.
The Beehive has been closed as a pub since 2017.
Two previous attempts to convert it into flats, going back to 2010, were refused planning permission and dismissed by the Planning Inspector.
But unless the developers manage to find another tenant to use the premises for retail, the locally listed building might yet be subject of another application for residential use.
Planning permission was granted in November 2020 by Croydon Council to developers Lali Enterprises Ltd for the conversion of the pub into retail premises, and builders were on-site carrying out the construction work agreed until quite recently. It was widely understood that the Co-op, just as they have done with several other sites around the borough, were looking to open a convenience store there.
But then in the last few weeks of the 2022, all works at the Beehive seemed to come to a halt.
A visit to the building this week found no one working there, and just a few paint tins and builders’ debris inside.
The Co-op has confirmed to Inside Croydon that they have pulled out of the site. The supermarket business had never owned the building, and a spokesperson said today, “Co-op no longer has an interest in the site.”
Which leaves the developers with a tricky decision to take: whether to complete the conversion job, for which they have planning consent, and try to find another suitable tenant, or go back to the council with a new planning application for flats.
The Beehive site has already been altered, with out-buildings demolished, to provide vehicular access for a separate, neighbouring development, also being undertaken by Lali Enterprises.
They got planning permission in 2020 to build nine terraced houses behind Anthony Road, but they would not have been able to include off-street parking and access from Woodside Green without demolishing a single-storey wing to the rear of the Beehive.
This week, in a response to an enquiry from a Woodside ward councillor, a council planning official wrote, “If a developer wished to convert the Beehive public house into a residential use, it would be necessary for a new application to be submitted to the local planning authority for assessment and decision.
“I have checked our records and at present we have not received an application for the use of the Beehive public house to be used as a residential use.”
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