Housing plan for historic Leigh Park pub site set to go-ahead

Fareham Community Hospital in Salisbury Green

Picture: Paul Jacobs

LETTER OF THE DAY: We urgently need a bus service to Fareham hospital

Have your say

PLANS to build 10 houses on the site of a historic pub are set to get the green light.

For decades a public house was a fixture in Riders Lane in Leigh Park – long before the housing estate was built.

It was used as stopping point on the journey between Havant and Waterlooville.

But in recent years The Cricketers Tavern fell into disrepair and was bulldozed in 2009.

Now developer MCP (Poole) Ltd plans to build 10 three-bedroom houses on the site, which is currently surrounded by 7ft hoardings.

Planning officials at Havant Borough Council have recommended that councillors approve the scheme at a meeting tomorrow.

It comes after previous plans to build 10 flats, six houses and a community building were refused by the council – as well as being dismissed by the government planning inspector when the developer appealed.

The reason given was because the development would overlook surrounding properties and the design would not fit in with the neighbourhood.

The developer has now submitted revised plans for a smaller scheme.

But local councillor Faith Ponsonby was still concerned about the impact of traffic.

She said: ‘It’s a very narrow road.

‘It must have been the original road that run up from central Havant to Waterlooville.

‘It’s very much a lane.

‘That’s my concern and the impact of parking on residents in Sunnyheath.

‘There are about two spaces per house. Three bedroom houses can often have four cars attached to them if they have teenage sons who have cars.’

But she added: ‘The previous applications were not suitable for such a small site.

‘This is certainly an improvement.’

Cllr Ponsonby said it was a shame that so many pubs had closed in Leigh Park.

In the 1960s, The Cricketers Tavern was a popular spot for watching cricket on Stockheath Common.

She said: ‘It’s a complete culture change that people do not really go to pubs as a regular thing.’

The final decision will be made by councillors at a meeting at 5pm tomorrow at Havant College.

If approved, the developer has agreed to give more than £16,000 towards improving children’s play areas.