Costa Coffee refused permission to knock down Leeds United pub The Drysalters near Elland Road

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Plans to knock down Leeds United match day pub The Drysalters have been refused by Leeds City Council.
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The agent for the chain claimed the pub had become "increasingly unprofitable" and that the current owners had struggled to sell it on.

The inside of Leeds United match day pub The Drysalters.The inside of Leeds United match day pub The Drysalters.
The inside of Leeds United match day pub The Drysalters.

But Leeds City Council officers said no evidence was provided to support the claim.

In a decision published on the council's website dated September 14, officers said: "The Public House is considered to form a valued and sustainable facility and which has a strong social objective in supporting communities health, social and cultural well-being both primarily locally within Cottingley / Beeston / Churwell and secondly in a wider catchment across the City of Leeds and beyond in its patronage and connections to Cottingley Crematorium and Leeds United Football Club.

"The loss of the Public House would reduce the community's ability to meet its day-to-day needs in an area where other immediately accessible opportunities are very limited.

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"It is not considered that the introduction of a coffee shop / drive-through premises would give a suitable alternative offer to this community loss."

Leeds United match day pub The Drysalters.Leeds United match day pub The Drysalters.
Leeds United match day pub The Drysalters.

Hayley Guy, born and bred on the Cottingley Estate, created a Facebook group to co-ordinate opposition to Costa.

She said: "I am overwhelmed at the response we have had from the #savethesalters Facebook group, we have over 2,000 members and it’s been really pro active and we’ve had over 100 objections to the demolition, even the local Labour councillors have objected in our support and have backed us all the way.

"The council’s decision to refuse the demolition and building of a coffee shop is a fantastic outcome for the community, and I would like to thank everyone who has taken the time to object and get involved with the petition.

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"We will be having a meeting soon to discuss what happens next, and hopefully we could get a potential investor to buy the pub and keep it for the Cottingley community.

Hayley Guy.Hayley Guy.
Hayley Guy.

"It’s also somewhere safe and better managed for Leeds United away fans to visit when football is on.

"It will stop anti-social behaviour in the city centres if the away fans have somewhere close to the ground to go for a pre-and-post match pint, also stopping fans drinking alcohol in the streets."

Council officers also rejected the proposal on the basis of the lack of information provided concerning specific planning policies, including seating provision, safeguards around the prevention of traffic queuing onto the A6110 Ring Road and the impact on nearby trees.

Costa Coffee has been contacted for comment.


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