Controversial plan for beer garden in Sheffield park 'would help pub survive the pandemic'

A pub company has restated its desire to create a 20-table beer garden in a Sheffield park saying it would help it survive the pandemic.

Saturday, 17th October 2020, 2:24 pm

True North Brew Co wants to rent a parcel of land next to the Waggon & Horses in Millhouses Park.

The plan was first mooted two years ago, but now bosses say the extra seating will boost trade after Sheffield’s new ‘high alert’ status banned households mixing indoors, decimating customer numbers across the hospitality sector.

The proposal is set to go before the city council’s planning committee in December.

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Image of the new beer garden beside the Waggon & Horses in Millhouses.

The Friends of Millhouses Park oppose any loss of parkland and fear it would set a ‘dangerous precedent’.

Some 45 objections have been submitted over potential parking problems, noise, anti-social behaviour, litter, traffic, broken glass and harm to wildlife.

The bid has attracted 33 letters in support.

Kane Yeardley, boss of True North, said it looked as if the Covid rules would be around until well into next year and the beer garden would help them survive.

The Waggon and Horses at Millhouses

He added: “This plan demonstrates our thinking at the moment to help preserve and adapt our businesses to survive.

“We have strict rules in all our pubs and restaurants and people obviously feel safe on our premises as we have seen really good numbers and I think when they see how we are managing their visit it also gives customers the confidence to come and support their local pub.

"These are challenging times, I like to think that we create cosy, community pubs run by professional and friendly teams.”

If approved, he hoped to launch the new space in spring and create 10 jobs in summer, he added.

Mr Yeardley also said they had ‘zero tolerance’ of drunkenness.

He added: “Our plans will not affect or limit anyone using the park as CCTV we have had in place for over a year has shown the public rarely sit or even pass through there as they prefer to walk further into the park.”

Two trees would have to be felled to make space for disabled access.

A petition launched by Christine Gunby has 1,918 signatures. It opposes the loss of green space in an area with ‘far less per head of population than Sheffield's declared aspirations’.

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