Ellie Ames 27 February 2024

Crooked House owners ordered to rebuild pub

Crooked House owners ordered to rebuild pub image
Image: The Crooked House website.

‘Britain’s wonkiest inn’ must be rebuilt to the condition it was in before a suspected arson attack last year, the local authority has said.

Today, South Staffordshire Council served an enforcement notice on the owners of the Crooked House, in Himley, near Dudley, who unlawfully demolished the building after the fire in August.

Owners have 30 days to appeal the notice or three years to comply.

Council leader Roger Lees said: ‘We have not taken this action lightly, but we believe that it is right to bring the owners, who demolished the building without consent, to account and we are committed to do what we can to get the Crooked House rebuilt.’

Cllr Lees added: ‘We have had great support from the local community, our MPs and the mayor of the West Midlands, and from the campaign group whose aim is to see the Crooked House back to its former glory which is the key objective of the enforcement notice’.

Local government minister Simon Hoare welcomed the news, adding: ‘it sends a clear message of the importance regarding the status of our heritage pubs’.

The Crooked House was a non-designated heritage asset, registered as a building of local importance.

The campaign director of the Campaign for Pubs, Greg Mulholland, said: ‘We are absolutely delighted that South Staffordshire Council have done the right and essential thing and ordered the current owners of the Crooked House to rebuild it exactly as it was before its appalling destruction.

‘This is the only just course of action and the council and the Planning Inspectorate must ensure the owners abide by the enforcement notice, so that this amazing community gets this world-famous pub back.’

Five men and one woman were arrested in connection with the fire, which Staffordshire Police is treating as arson. They remain on conditional bail.

For more on this story, check out our feature: Why the planning system is failing our pubs

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