Sainsbury’s St Albans pub garden store plan rejected

The Three Hammers pub

The Three Hammers pub - Credit: Archant

Sainsbury’s contentious push to build a £2.5 million store on a historic pub’s garden in St Albans has been refused at an appeal.

The rejection, announced in a planning inspectorate decision released today (Thursday), will bring relief to local residents who had fought against the bid.

Scores of objections flooded in from residents after Sainsbury’s asked for permission to build a convenience store in the garden of Grade II listed Three Hammers Pub, Watford Road, Chiswell Green.

At a St Albans district council plans south meeting in March, George Old, representing the Chiswell Green Residents’ Association, warned that construction of the proposed store would result in the loss of the only green space in the village centre.

He added: “This is the heart of Chiswell Green. The convenience store, which has the appearance of a bunker, will be a complete contrast and out of keeping with this ancient pub.”

In her decision, planning inspector Hilda Higenbottam said planning permission was refused because store customers would park close to the boundaries of two neighbouring homes, which would have a negative impact upon residents’ living conditions.

She said: “The close proximity of the parking and the extended period when both the public house and convenience store would be open ... would result in significant noise and disturbance to the occupiers of these properties, particularly in the summer months when they would be likely to use their gardens more frequently.”