A Grade-II listed pub in Welham Green will be converted into homes after a planning application was approved on Monday.

Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council approved SRC Developments Limited’s plans to turn the former Hope and Anchor pub into three dwellings and build a further six homes on the site.

All but one of the homes will be two-bedroom properties with outdoor space, and the converted pub with its 17th-century timber frame will be made to match neighbouring 20th century buildings.

Welwyn Hatfield Times: A further six homes will be built on the site. Credit: Welwyn Hatfield Borough CouncilA further six homes will be built on the site. Credit: Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council (Image: Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council)

Paul Zukowskyj, Liberal Democrat councillor for Welham Green and Hatfield South, took no issue with the housing plans, but is disappointed to see the village pub go and is keen to see the building not lose its historic features.

“It’s always a shame to see a village pub close, but hopefully this means the final village pub will be more viable and will continue to be a focal point for the community in the future,” he told the Welwyn Hatfield Times.

“The plans for redevelopment seem fair, although I hope the council will keep a close eye on the work to ensure the reason the pub is listed is not lost.

“I’m glad we will see housing on the site, we need more family homes and it seems this plan will deliver exactly that.”

The plans have been approved subject to conditions, which state changes to the building must be kept to a minimum, with materials carefully selected to fit the age of the building.

Those being used in the new homes will either already be in use on the site or have been used historically, including “a mixture of render, facing brick, clay tiles and weatherboarding.”

A detailed schedule of works and repairs must also be submitted and approved in writing by Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council, while no development above ground level will occur until details of the proposed windows, doors, log burners and any new flues for log burners have been submitted and approved in writing by the Local Planning Authority.

A spokesman from Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council added: "Overall, the council considered that the proposed scheme would not only preserve the special interest and setting of the listed building through conversion to residential use, but that the loss of a community facility would be mitigated by having the Sibthorpe Arms, which is larger and very close by.

"The scheme will also provide further housing, making a modest but nonetheless much-needed contribution to addressing the acute shortfall of required housing provision within the borough."

The Hope and Anchor dates back to 1838 when, according to records, it was operating as a pub.

But the pub fell on hard times, receiving a host of noise complaints in mid-2020 and accusations that there had been a breach of their licence conditions, before closing in June this year.