A bowling green designed by celebrated architect Harry Redfern behind one of the state management pubs in Carlisle will be developed into seven houses.

The Redfern Inn on Kingmoor Road, Belah, was built in 1939 and named after Mr Redfern because it was one of the final public houses he designed as part of the city’s famous State Management Scheme.

Bowling greens were a feature of many Redfern pubs to encourage people to socialise and take part in other activities rather than binge drinking.

But the bowling green is no longer the pristine area designed by Mr Redfern and owner Punch Taverns limited have successfully applied for permission to build seven houses on it.

Carlisle councillors at the development and control committee meeting last Friday had different opinions about the application and when it came down to a vote five went against and seven were in favour.

Those against the proposal said it would be a loss both for the local community and an important part of the city's heritage. They moved a refusal of the application arguing it would cause significant damage to a Grade II listed building and its setting.

Lucy Patrick said it was important to bear in mind the significance of the bowling green to the local community and to the city's culture and history, and argued it could be used into a community area.

Steven Bowditch was also keenly in favour of keeping the green.

He said: "To lose it I think is absolutely wrong."

But those in favour of the application said the bowling green had been lost years ago and a housing development was the best way forward.

A condition was written into the permission that funds had to be invested into the Redfern Inn, which has retained a small garden area.

Ray Bloxham said: "You can't play bowls on that. Nobody's played on that for five to eight years. It's full of weeds.

"It would have to be stripped off and remade into a bowling green and that would be expensive and nobody's going to take it up.

"I'm very sad to see that bowling green go but if by doing this development it means the pub and it's architecture stays, that's good enough for me."

Heather Bradley said: "I very much regret that the original concept of having a bowling green should go but I would prefer we see the Redfern to continue rather than see it lost in the same was that the Rose and Crown was lost."

In 2013 the Rose and Crown in Upperby became the first Redfern pub to be demolished.