Cambridge pub closure fears prompt council action plan
Concern over the number of pubs closing in Cambridge has prompted the city council to produce draft guidelines to protect its hostelries.
The plans, which are in the consultation stage, are designed to ensure pubs can only be redeveloped for housing if they are no longer needed.
They are designed to "deal robustly with speculative applications".
There are 86 public houses operating in the city, but more than 20 have been redeveloped in the past five years.
The number of traditional pubs which had closed increased further if those turned into restaurants or "gastro pubs" were included, according to a report commissioned by the city council.
A number of factors for the closures were cited, including competition from supermarkets discounting alcohol, changes to people's drinking habits and a ban on smoking.
The report also recognised the lack of affordable housing and available building plots in the city made large central pubs attractive to developers.
Executive councillor for planning and sustainable transport, Tim Ward, said: "Local residents and others have made the council aware that this is an issue of concern to them and we have listened to their concern in developing this new approach."
The consultation closes on 27 July.