Cornard pub to be sold at auction

A FORMER pub in Great Cornard, the scene of a murder 13 years ago, is being put up for auction with a guide price of between £50,000 and £75,000, writes Anne Wise.

The former Queen’s Arms, in Broom Street, which closed in 2008, is being sold off by auction in London on Thursday. It has planning permission to be converted to two flats and two office units.

The pub was where Karl Morris, 23, from Abbas Walk, Great Cornard, died from head injuries after a fight in the pub’s car park on Good Friday in April, 1999.

Great Cornard Parish Council chairman Mick Cornish said the sale of the pub was a shame, coming hot on the heels of news of plans to demolish Highbury Barn, in Canhams Road, where a petition has been submitted to owners Punch Taverns to save it.

Commenting on the £50,000 price tag, he said: “That sounds cheap.”

He described the building in its current condition and boarded up as an eyesore.

“The pub certainly needs something doing to it,” he said. “It is in an absolute mess and right opposite the Stephenson Centre.”

He said most people would welcome the building being given some attention, but it was at the loss of another pub in the area.

“We don’t really want to see more pubs going in this area,” he said. “They serve a very useful purpose as a place for people to meet one another.”

Great Cornard parish councillor Tony Bavington said: “I do think the look of the place spoils the street scene and it’s an eyesore so it would be good to see it done up.

“With the pub trade the way it is, it’s unlikely to be turned back into a pub so the next best thing would be offices and housing.

“In fact, offices would be quite useful in Great Cornard as a I fear, what with the Guildford site going, we will end up with no employment sites and Great Cornard will become a dormitory.”

The former freehold pub is being sold on the instructions of Allsop LLP.

Planning permission was granted by Babergh District Council in 2009 to build two flats and two office units on the site.