Drinkers vow to keep pub open

Sutton pub regulars are fighting to keep their ‘community hub’ open in the town.

Plans to turn the Mapplewells Inn, on Alfreton Road, into a Co-op supermarket have been submitted to Ashfield District Council.

Local residents and regulars at the Mapplewells Inn who are opposed to plans to shut the pub down and open a new Co-op.

Local residents and regulars at the Mapplewells Inn who are opposed to plans to shut the pub down and open a new Co-op.

But many regulars - who have frequented the popular pub for more than four decades - have formed an action group to put a halt to the plans.

Jenny Guy (60), of Mapplewells Road, has been going to the pub for 42 years and is determined to do everything she can to prevent its closure.

She said: “The pub is much more than a pub, it’s a community hub for so many people.

“For many it’s the only chance they get to go and socialise with others. And we all look out for each other. It’s such an integral and important part of our community. It is so much more than a pub.”

There are also concerns about safety measures along Alfreton Road.

“Lorries making deliveries are going to block off the road - which is already fairly congested.

“Someone will be hurt if these plans go ahead. Supermarkets have so many deliveries every day and at best it will cause traffic, at worst, it will cause accidents,” she added.

She said there are memorial benches outside which they hoped would remain. The pub is also home to many clubs and is used as a polling station.

The application was made by New River Retail Property Unit Trust

The regulars have submitting their objections to the plans, which will be decided by the planning committee on the 18th March.

A spokesman for NewRiver Retail said: “Plans have been submitted to Ashfield District Council for a new convenience store to be operated by the Co-operative Food at the Mapplewells Inn. The existing pub building will be retained and refurbished and involve minimal changes.

The new store would offer local people high quality fresh produce and would increase choice for local residents.

“10 new jobs are expected to be created. Steps have been taken to inform the local community of the plans through the delivery of an information leaflet and the planning application will now be subject to the normal decision-making process.”