Protection for Shenley pubs

The King William IV in St Albans

The King William IV in St Albans - Credit: Archant

TWO village pubs have been named as assets of community value under new legislation which is intended to help protect land and buildings of significant importance to the community.

The White Horse and King William IV, both in London Road, Shenley, have been added to Hertsmere borough council’s list of assets of community value.

It means that if the pubs are ever put up for sale, community interest groups will be given a chance to prepare a bid to buy the properties. Both pubs were nominated to be added to the list by Shenley parish council.

The Black Lion Basmati, which was also nominated by the parish council, was not added to the list because there was not enough evidence to demonstrate that as a restaurant it contributed to the social well-being and recreational interests of the village.

Hertsmere borough council’s portfolio holder for planning and localism, Dr Harvey Cohen, approved the decision on Friday following a recommendation by the council’s listing panel.

Cllr Cohen said: “The Community Right to Bid legislation was brought in to help communities protect local amenities or buildings that are important to them.

Under the legislation, local groups have the right to nominate a building to be listed as an asset of community value.

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“We agreed to add The White Horse and King William IV to that list because they are thriving public houses which further the social well-being and recreational interests of the village.

“It was felt that as an Indian restaurant, The Black Lion Basmati does not have the same status.

“It doesn’t mean either of the pubs will be bought by the community if they are put up for sale, but it does mean the community have more opportunity to help shape the future of their village and protect these amenities for subsequent generations.”

Under Community Right to Bid legislation, brought in by the Government a year ago, if an asset of community value is put up for sale, an interim moratorium is immediately triggered.

A charity, community interest company or non-profit making company or society then has six weeks to submit a written request to be treated as potential bidders for the property.

If a request is received within that time, then a full moratorium is triggered which prohibits any sale of the land or property for the remainder of six months from the date the interim moratorium was triggered, unless it is to a community interest group.

A full moratorium has already been triggered on the sale of The Three Horseshoes in Letchmore Heath after Aldenham parish council submitted a written request to be treated as a potential bidder. The moratorium will end on 10 December.