The fire was deliberately started on the first floor of the Bush Inn on Keresforth Hill Road, according to the fire service.
Crews from Cudworth, Tankersley and Barnsley attended the scene on Keresforth Hill Road at about 4.45pm last Friday.
Coun Tom Sheard said the building had been an eyesore for nearby residents for many years and said it should now be demolished.
He added: "It's been closed for a long time now - it must be between eight and ten years. It is an eyesore and it is getting worse. It would be ideal if it could be developed in some way."
The building is owned by Mayfield Barnsley Ltd, which is part of the Brook Group.
He said the plan had been to refurbish the building but added: "We tried a number of things to get things moving but it's been on the market for several years and we're looking at alternative uses for it, such as retail, shops, or takeaways. We've had some interest in it and the market is getting better but it has been extremely tough."
** The full story is in the Barnsley Chronicle, dated October 31. **