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1st Jul, 2022

Former mayor hits out at 'civic embarrassment'

A DERELICT pub in Stratford has been branded a ‘civic embarrassment’ by former mayor Roy Lodge.

The site of the former Green Dragon, at the crossroads of Greenhill Street and Arden Street, has stood empty for nearly six years.

It is a stone’s throw from the new £40million Arden Quarter housing scheme, also known as Stratford Gateway, and one of the first sites seen by visitors to the town who arrive at the train station.

A number of designs have been put forward to redevelop the building, which was last home to nightclub ‘Maison’.

And the latest plans for nine apartments and office space were approved by Stratford District Council two years ago.

But as yet no building work has started, and the approved plans are due to expire next year.

Dr Lodge said: “The derelict pub site continues to be an environmental disgrace and civic embarrassment.

“It has already been said that once visitors get over the shock of the newly-erected Arden Quarter and start walking towards the town centre eagerly anticipating their Shakespeare experience that they are confronted with this eyesore of a derelict space.

“With no imminent preparation or work taking place do we really have to continue to suffer this gross, inexcusable affront to our civic pride?”

He praised the latest designs for the site as iconic and in keeping with other nearby buildings and could not understand why work had not started.

But Stratford Town Council was among those which objected to the design calling it overbearing and out of place.

The district council confirmed developer Escape Developments had not been in contact since plans were approved in 2017.

The Observer has contacted the developer and is awaiting comment.

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