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U-turn over plans to demolish Cumbrian pub

One of Whitehaven’s best-known pubs looks like it will be flattened to make way for a multi-million pound office complex in the town centre.

The Dusty Miller pub photo
The Dusty Miller

The fate of the Dusty Miller has been uncertain since it was announced four years ago that a £20m office block, housing 1,000 Sellafield office workers, was to be built on land surrounding the pub.

Neighbouring buildings were purchased and demolished to make way for the scheme, but it looked like the Swingpump Lane premises was to remain.

Chorley-based Trust Inns, which own the pub, told the News & Star last year that there were no plans to sell the pub to make way for the development and before Christmas it reopened after a revamp with new landlords.

But these plans have now taken a U-turn as NDA Properties Ltd, part of the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority which is leading the Albion Square scheme, is in negotiations over the sale of the building.

Brian Hough, NDA’s socio-economic manager, said: “We are in negotiations to purchase the Dusty Miller and it will form part of the overall Albion Square development.

“To make the project (Albion Square) even more beneficial, we felt it would be right to purchase this premises.”

He added that the site was earmarked for a disabled car park.

“The first thing we would do would be to carry out the demolition and clearance of the site pretty quickly, which I would expect to happen in a relatively short term,” said Mr Hough.

Mr Hough explained that it has taken until now to look at purchasing the pub, as the detailed plans into the scheme developed, it made sense.

The NDA, which is leading the delivery of the major four-storey office block on behalf of Britain’s Energy Coast, awarded the contract to UK construction and infrastructure company Morgan Sindall just before Christmas.

This week the firm held a ‘supply chain event’ for local businesses to attend and get involved with the development.

Demolition and clearance work on the site is ongoing and Mr Hough said that everything is running to plan.

It is expected that the complex will open in the middle of next year.

Have your say

It's all very well twining on on these message boards but if you really did want to save the Dusty Miller then you should have put in an objection to the Council, but you couldn't be bothered. Unfortunately your all just typical West Cumbrians, twine alot but do nowt yourselves.

Posted by Mike on 21 February 2013 at 16:30

Just get on with it and knock it down . Make a wider junction for us on Kells, there was'nt many people going into the dusty any way.

Posted by Kells lad on 24 January 2013 at 08:06

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