The Admiral Jellicoe, the Loss of Canvey’s Buildings of Local Interest, and the apparent disinterest of Castle Point Council.

The loss of the Canvey Island Admiral Jellicoe public house is unsurprising.

Admiral Jellicoe

Admiral Jellicoe. Luke Baker Photography.

Indecisive governance in the borough leaves the area unprotected by a Local Plan, and Canvey Island, in particular, almost defenceless against unrestricted development.The Jellicoe site will be re-developed, quite probably with Flats.

But the viability of an affordable housing allocation will be strongly contested! Allowances to be made for Flood Alleviation and the cost allegedly paid for the site will be points of contention. The apparent sale of the Crown public house in Hadleigh Town Centre, a far more attractive proposition for a developer, went for £400,000.

Whilst newspaper reports suggest the Admiral Jellicoe was purchased for £1,000,000.

With a Plan, Local or otherwise, there may have been the potential to insist that a community facility should be built on part of the site alongside a level of affordable housing.

This potential has been lost as the developer would have purchased the site in the knowledge that no restriction exists where cpbc planning control is concerned.

Those concerned at the loss of yet another Canvey Island iconic building should be asking questions of the local authority.

The King Canute is also in danger of destruction, should the contractors accidentally damage the building’s structure! There is a condition imposed by cpbc that states efforts must be made to protect the front and side elevations of the King Canute throughout the re-development, but this was not part of any planning conditions imposed by cpbc officers!

It was only following enquiries by the Canvey Green Belt Campaign group to the development committee chairman and the last minute suggestion during the committee’s consideration that led to the protection condition to be imposed. Officers previously showed NO Concern on the retention of the King Canute “shell”!

And yet cpbc are quick and keen to Harness the “Canvey Community Spirit” when there is gain to be made.

Following the grand work undertaken by two community groups the Canvey beach area is now unrecognisable to its previously unkept state. This has not only advantaged the Sandy Bay development but also opened the door of opportunity for cpbc.

The Canvey, Coastal Communities Alliance is another cpbc scheme seeking to dip into the Coastal Communities Fund dclg general fund. It could be suggested that if not for the excellent, tireless and selfless commitment to the sea front by the Canvey volunteer groups, the potential to chase some of these funds, would not have even occurred to cpbc! We wonder whether these grants, when distributed, are ring-fenced.

Similar to the 6 point plan seeking £24,500,000 government funding for drainage improvements on Canvey Island, which appear to be being less determinedly sought following the government asking for detailed expenditures of work required!

But we digress.

The topic was the continued loss of iconic and important local buildings to development with no public amenity to compensate.

CAMRA’s position in relation to the loss of Pubs states;

“debt-ridden pub property companies (Pubco’s) anxious to sell off pubs; often these are deliberately run down beforehand to make them less commercially attractive to those wishing to take them on as pubs.”

Suggestions have been made by locals that indeed this is what appears to have happened during the final period of the Admiral Jellicoe’s days as a public house.

Castle Point Council is the licencing authority, it could be suggested that they should have taken action once it became apparent that the deliberate Running Down of the business may have been being carried out.

Alongside the lack of a Local Plan for the area this inactivity, or ineptitude, will see more locally important buildings succumb to development with little advantage for residents.

Castle Point council appear more determined where the Crown ex public house, due to be part of the Hadleigh regeneration plan, is concerned.

According to an Echo report in 2011, cpbc were very close to settling a deal for the Crown with the aid of a £175,000 grant from Essex County Council, which had been sold by the brewery to MCC developments following its closure in 2009.

The obvious question arising is what might be the current value of the Crown site, given the apparent £1,000,000 sale of the Admiral Jellicoe, and, should it occur, is this appropriate use of the borough’s funds?

Photograph Copyright: Luke Baker

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7 responses to “The Admiral Jellicoe, the Loss of Canvey’s Buildings of Local Interest, and the apparent disinterest of Castle Point Council.

  1. Editor
    Whilst it would appear that a planning application has not as yet come forward for the Admiral Jellico site, it would not be unreasonable to assume that the pre application discussions with the Planning Officers at CPBC have or will shortly be taking place.

    Based on that seemingly all planning applications applicable to Canvey Island are granted and given previous examples of the relaxations of justifiable reasons for refusal, it is not unreasonable to assume the following outcome for this site.

    When submitted, the proposed development will not be in character with the existing street scene of two storey developments. Consequently it will not be consistent with Policy EC2 of the Adopted Local Plan in that it will not have regard to the scale, density and siting in terms of its development.

    More importantly it will not offer ease and safety of movement and access for all users given it location.

    The proposal will not be consistent with paragraph 56 of the National Planning Policy Framework which requires development to contribute positively to making places better for people.

    It will not be consistent with paragraph 57 of the NPPF which seeks the achievement of high design quality

    It will not satisfy the expectations of paragraph 58 of the NPPF which seeks to ensure that development reflects the local character and history.

    None of these issues will be strong enough to convince the predominately conservative planning committee members that CPBC should object to any planning application for this site on Canvey Island. With the planning case officer, as in the past, stating “However in this case “meaning that its justified on Canvey Island.

    It will certainly be highlighted that the application will satisfy Policy H9 of the Adopted Local Plan which requires the optimum density of housing to be achieved on any site. This is not always the case in other parts of the Borough.

    It will also be claimed that the development will be broadly consistent with paragraph 58 of the NPPF which requires development to optimise the potential of a site. This can then be associated with the continued development of Canvey Island deemed necessary to sustain the local community and prevent the social and economic blight of the settlement.

    In summary Canvey Island can expect the Admiral Jellico site to provide between 45 and 50 Flatted dwellings and in doing so provide a significant contribution to the Boroughs housing number requirement. Despite being within a critical drainage area.

  2. Knowing the buyer there is little doubt it will be flats

  3. Using he Echo as an accurate source is a little dangerous.
    The loss of iconic buildings is sad, but unless they are listed there is little that can be done, and if they are listed that causes other issues that do not help retain a building and is some times the kiss of death as repairs to listed standards can cost it out of reality.
    Pubs are struggling every where as demand changes and it leaves large old buildings open to development, I would be very surprised if this site had not been looked at by CPBC.

    • Thanks for your input Simon, it is always welcome.
      You will note the cautious wording where references to the Crown public house and the fee paid for the Admiral Jellicoe is concerned.
      Little information is available on the Jellicoe, whilst updated news from cpbc, of the Crown and its part in the Hadleigh regeneration appears to be long overdue.
      This being the case we have had to speculate, but hopefully in a reserved manner.
      Regards Editor

  4. Editor
    Am I correct when recalling that back in March 2011 the then Council leader Mrs Pam Challis and Councillor Norman Ladzrie campaigned for those residents that wanted the Crown Pub and Restaurant facility to remain as an integral part of the Hadleigh Town regeneration plans.
    Having saved this treasured landmark the local community were looking forward to enjoying its ambiance shortly after its purchase with public funds. It is therefore more than disappointing that its future seems doomed, there being no attempt to return it to its original use. Understandably the community would feel further aggrieved as a part owner of this once treasured landmark via their council tax contribution , that CPBC have been responsible for its dereliction.

    • Happy new year Steve
      The pub as far as I know was bought not with the intention of being a pub but with foresight of Hadleigh’s Regeneration project.
      It is a sad fact that these pubs are closing due to lack of support and most are old buildings and it is not within the Councils Control to maintain businesses.
      It is not a perfect world I am afraid, and both Canvey and Hadleigh Regeneration are struggling but we must keep on trying.

  5. Simon
    Happy New year to you and thank you for your comments with regards to the Crown Public House.
    It was recorded perhaps incorrectly in the Echo in March 2011 that Pam Challis, the then leader of the council, made the announcement that the authority struck a deal with owners MCC Developments for the pub site in High Street.
    She said: “We have had a number of approaches – one option could be both a restaurant and a cinema.
    “First of all we need to find out what Hadleigh’s residents want to see there, then we will consider the possibilities.
    “The important thing is we’ve purchased the site and we can preserve it for leisure and community use.”

    Mrs Challis said the price paid for the pub was commercially sensitive, as the council could decide to sell it in the future.

    She also confirmed that whatever use is chosen for the site, the original building will not be knocked down.

    In July of 2011 the draft Hadleigh Master Plan indicated strong public support to retain the locally listed Crown Public House for reuse as a family pub/restaurant.

    However the draft document recorded.-
    “Given the strong public interest in the building and the existing public ownership it may be possible to see the Crown re-open as a community-led venture based around a charitable trust. Alternatively it could be sold to a developer either as a stand-alone project or potentially in conjunction with the element of residential development on the northern part of the site”

    It would appear as you suggest Simon that in reality the Crown Public House will not be returned to its previous use.

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