BEER enthusiasts have joined Rochdale MP Simon Danczuk in the fight to save a beloved local pub from closure.
The Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) have given their backing to the landlords of the Bull’s Head in Smallbridge who are opposing plans by the pub’s owners to convert the building into a vet’s surgery.
Kent based firm Prontoserve have applied to Rochdale Council for permission to alter the use of the property on Halifax Road. In its application, the property business claimed the popular and profitable Bull’s Head is making a loss.
Despite running the pub for five years, Paul Quinn and Kay Bevan only learned of Prontoserve’s application when they read a planning notice posted on a nearby lamppost.
The couple have contacted Peter Alexander, chairman of Rochdale, Oldham and Bury branch of CAMRA, who offered advice about how to register the Bull’s Head as an Asset of Community Value.
If successful, this would pause the planning application and could eventually offer Paul, Kay and the pub’s regulars the chance to purchase the Bull’s Head and run it as a co-operative.
Mr Alexander said: “CAMRA supports pubs. We have lost too many recently. We believe that if a pub is can supply a living and meet the needs of its customers, then the people who know it best – willing landlords - should be allowed to continue to do so.
“The Bull’s Head is a popular pub which meets local needs, serves and is supported by the community. We support the continuation of viable pubs and will support campaigns such as this, to register them as a community asset.
After visiting the Bull’s Head earlier this month, Mr Danczuk raised the issue in Parliament and urged the Government to do more to protect local pubs.
Speaking about CAMRA’s contribution to the Bull’s Head campaign, Mr Danczuk said: “The support for the Bull’s Head is overwhelming and continues to grow by the day.
“Prontoserve have attempted to mislead planning officers by claiming the building is run down.
“But when it comes to assessing how valuable this pub is to Rochdale people, I will take the word of our local CAMRA branch over a Southern based property firm any day.”