PLANS have been submitted to construct a fast food chain restaurant and drive-through on a highly contested former pub site in Stairfoot.

An application for a new Burger King, which would be the first in the town, was submitted last month on Grange Lane at the former Black Bull Hotel site.

In March 2019 the council gave the go-ahead for Stairfoot’s landmark pub, which dates back to 1773, to be demolished - though protesters felt that the demolition was unlawful.

Members of the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) claimed that the council had either ignored or forgotten about the change in law protecting pubs from demolition without public scrutiny.

No planning application was submitted for the demolition, nor was the intention to demolish the pub made public - however it was knocked down, leaving CAMRA members reeling.

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Nigel Croft, of Barnsley CAMRA, said: “There was a lot of controversy when it was first being knocked down because the council were using the wrong regulations - CAMRA fought against this.

“Our pleas were falling on deaf ears until six months after the building was knocked down and the council admitted that they’d made a mistake.

“Obviously there’s nothing you can do then because the building has already knocked down, you can’t just rebuild it like they would in London - I wouldn’t want the tax payers money being spent on something like that either.”

However Nigel admits that due to the site now being derelict it is important that something is built there, and is thankful that it isn’t another McDonald’s chain just metres away from the restaurant on Wombwell Lane.

“It is a shame that the pub was knocked down for yet another fast food chain but it has got to be used for something,” he added.

“The site is derelict now and it has been for more than a year, the council did own up to their mistake but it’s too late to do anything about it now so something does need to be built there.

“I’m not a fast food man myself but I’m sure that a lot of people will want there to be a Burger King there - at least it’s not another McDonald’s.”

It is proposed that the entrance to the site on Grange Lane will be permanently closed, and a new improved access to the restaurant will be built on Doncaster Road.

A planning statement states: “The existing site entrance/exit off Grange Lane is in a poor location in respect of its close proximity to the exit off Stairfoot roundabout.

“Closure of the existing entrance/exit off Grange Lane is proposed, with the creation a new improved access off Doncaster Road.

“Pedestrian access to the restaurant building for customers and staff will be via a level approach to the principle entrance to the building.”

As a part of the application a total of 12 new car parking spaces will be added to the site, bringing the overall number of spaces to 24.

The new restaurant will also bring 30 new jobs to the town - 13 of which are full-time and a further 17 part-time.

Public consultation for the new build ends on December 23.