Decision due on plan to knock down pub in Morton

The Lord Nelson, Morton.'Photo: MSMP291013-012ow ENGEMN00120131029200417
The Lord Nelson, Morton.'Photo: MSMP291013-012ow ENGEMN00120131029200417

Councillors have been urged to approve controversial plans to knock down a village pub and replace it with a food store.

South Kesteven District Council will consider Lincolnshire Co-operative’s plan to demolish the Lord Nelson in Bourne Road, Morton, on Tuesday.

The chain wants to build a convenience store in place of the pub and council planning officers have recommended the application be approved.

This is despite 40 letters of objection from the public, alongside opposition from Morton and Hanthorpe Parish Council.

Objectors raised a number of points about the proposed store. A key point was the issue of highway safety. Many objectors said the existing junction was not safe and building a shop would only increase traffic, thereby increasing the danger to pedestrians and motorists. One objector said existing shops in the village would be undermined and there was “no need for the proposed store”.

And another questioned why the pub had to be demolished when there was a vacant site over the road.

Lincolnshire Co-operative already has planning permission to build on the site of the former King’s Head, which it demolished in November. But the firm decided to develop the Lord Nelson site instead.

At the time, spokesman Emma Snedden said: “We feel a new food store in Morton will give people in the village further shopping choice and a place to do top up’ shopping without travelling far.

“This site is better placed to provide parking facilities and, because the store would be set further back from the road, would allow for better sight lines at the A15 junction.”

Lord Nelson landlord John Hailey will be forced to vacate the pub after brewery Marston’s sold the building to the Co-op.

He said: “It’s totally wrong that a big company like Lincolnshire Co-operative is allowed to come into a small village and do what they have done.”