Plans to convert the Bay Horse pub in Fulford into a cafe and flats have been refused by council chiefs.

Opposition from York CAMRA, Fulford Parish Council and others have helped City of York Council planners to refuse plans to convert the 200 year-old pub into a café and three flats.

The pub closed in January this year, was then sold to Manchester-based developer Arborfield Estates, who then submitted a planning application to change the use of the building, saying they also had a café operator lined up to take over.

The developer had told City of York Council that the use of the building for a pub with letting rooms in a conservation area has “ceased following a period of poor trading.”




However, York CAMRA submitted a 12-page report on why the pub should be saved.

The group’s pub protection officer told the Press that “Amongst other things, we stated that there was no evidence that the pub did not have a viable future, considering there is a big new development in the form of Germany Beck happening over the next few years with 600 houses.

“Furthermore, it did not meet the requirements of the draft Local Plan as it had not been marketed for two years as a going concern.

“Numerous other residents also registered their objections showing that the local community really care what happens to this pub and want it to remain as a public house.”

Nick added: “We are delighted that this valuable community asset has been saved hopefully for generations to come.”

A report by council planning staff noted CAMRA’s statement which said the pub had served the community for more than 100 years.

CAMRA believed the pub could re-open again and “play a pivotal role in community life under the correct business model.”

The applicant had not proven the pub was unviable and despite there being two other pubs nearby, this did not mean the Bay Horse could not flourish.

Similarly, Fulford Parish Council highlighted the pub’s community role, agreeing that no evidence had been submitted to show it was unviable. There had also been no public consultation concerning the café plan.

Nine objectors made similar comments, adding there are enough coffee shops in the area and no need for more flats.

York Press:


However, five supporters said the pub was in decline, there were enough pubs nearby, and a café would benefit the area by creating a ‘family-friendly venue.’

Council planners said pubs are a community facility and differ to cafes. They agreed a change of use would see the loss of a ‘valued community facility’ which a café is not.

The applicant also did not prove the pub was unviable, or could not be sold, and there was n consultation. Therefore, it did not meet various policies and should be refused.

Fulford and Heslington Ward Councillor, Kate Ravilious said today: "This application was an opportunistic and speculative effort that may well have paid off in another council area but in York we has a good track record of scrutinising proposals to redevelop pubs for other uses. 

“I’d like to thank local residents and CAMRA for their work which buys time to pursue listing the pub as an Asset of Community Value, if that is what the local community wants.

"My discussions with local residents suggests it is, and as ward councillor I will help support them in that process.  ACV status doesn’t secure permanent protection, but it gives time to explore every opportunity to keep the Bay Horse as a local pub”.