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Hadleigh’s Cock Inn pub proposes guest house expansion to ensure long-term viability of business

A Hadleigh pub hopes to diversify its business model with the provision of visitor accommodation, to help ensure its long-term viability amid challenging economic circumstances.

The Cock Inn is seeking permission from Babergh District Council to convert an existing resident dwelling on George Street into serviced accommodation, to support the adjacent pub.

The scheme, if approved, would see the property used as either as a guest house or as staff premises – rotating between these uses depending on the needs of the business at that time.

The Cock Inn in Hadleigh. Picture credit: Google Maps.
The Cock Inn in Hadleigh. Picture credit: Google Maps.

No physical alterations to the building would be necessary to carry out the proposed conversion.

A supporting planning statement explains that the application aims to ensure the “prosperity and longevity” of The Cock Inn, particularly with several other competing pubs also present within Hadleigh.

“Like many other situations such as this, there are continuing economic pressures on any such establishment where competition exists,” the statement reads.

“The need to diversify and offer alternatives to the traditional public house business model is clear. The attraction of semi-rural public houses as drinking establishments has declined.

“This is perhaps unsurprising, given the reduction in rural public transport services which exist, the changes in the way in which people choose to drink, the increased costs, and the changes to the drink driving and smoking laws.

“Despite that recognised and accepted position, and the difficulties associated with making such uses viable, The Cock Inn has been sustained. However, this is becoming increasingly difficult.

“This is not a speculative proposal, but one considered by the applicant to be necessary in order to assist in the continued long term viability of this community facility.”

The planning statement adds that the scheme would create new employment, while also protecting existing jobs.