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Tesco plans summer opening for Old Courthouse pub

The Old Courthouse venue in Cove will become a Tesco Express this summer

The Old Courthouse Pub

The Farnborough pub where the son of an ex-deputy council leader died following an incident outside will be a Tesco store within months.

The supermarket giant has submitted a planning application to Rushmoor Borough Council to turn the Old Courthouse in Cove into a Tesco Express.

Police closed the venue in November 2012 but the pub won back its licence later that year.

In April of 2012, Raymond Dibbs, 36, the son of the council’s deputy leader Roland Dibbs, collapsed with a head injury following an altercation outside the pub and died in hospital the next day.

Tesco has applied for planning consent to replace the entrance door and windows, with the intention to turning it into a Express store.

Tesco does not need planning permission to change the building’s use from a public house to a food retail shop, however it does need permission to make alterations to the existing building.

More than 10 planning applications have since been submitted and approved to make alterations to the building, including adding a loading dock and canopy for home shopping facilities, demolishing a porch and installing an ATM cash machine.

The latest application from Tesco, to display a number of illuminated signs outside the building and in the car park, was submitted to the council on May 6 and a decision is due by July 1.

A spokesman for Tesco confirmed this week it plans to open this summer.

The spokesman added: “The majority of the plans have now been approved and we are now waiting for the signage to be approved.

“We are pleased to be bringing forward our plans for our Express store and to be creating around 20 jobs for local people. We hope to open to our customers during the summer and look forward to serving the local community then.”

Becky Jane, manager of the One Stop store in Cove Road, said she was “pretty gutted” that a Tesco store could be coming to the road and said it would affect her business.

Paul Cowper, chairman of the Surrey & Hants Borders branch of the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA), said: “There are quite a lot of instances where this type of thing has been going on and CAMRA is not happy at all about it.”

However, one resident stated, on a Tesco planning application on the council’s website: “This is the best thing that could happen in this part of Cove.

“At present the existing site is a mess and it is just another boarded-up building to add to all the other boarded-up buildings in the town.

“We need somewhere like a Tesco where you can get everything you need in one place with plenty of off-street parking and easy access to the store.”

 

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