Campaigners triumph as Duke of Wellington pub wins protected status

Duke of Wellington credit google streetview

Protected: Duke of Wellington awarded ‘asset of community value’ status. Photograph: Google Streetview

A closed-down Hoxton pub has been granted protection by Hackney Council, in a victory for campaigners who battled to save the 70-year-old establishment.

The Duke of Wellington on Nile Street took its last orders in January but pub regulars Jason and Nicola Youngs vowed to continue fighting against the closure, fearing that it would be redeveloped into luxury housing.

Hackney Council this month announced the building will be listed as an Asset of Community Value (ACV), following an application by Mr and Mrs Youngs.

Buildings listed as ACVs are seen to be furthering “the well-being or social interest of the community”.

Although the move will not necessarily lead to the re-opening of the pub, the ACV status will allow community groups to put together a bid if the building goes on the market.

The council and Mr and Mrs Youngs must now be informed if there are plans to sell the building. If a local group then wants to buy the pub it can trigger a six-month buffer period, allowing them to raise the funds needed to place a bid.

In an online petition, which gathered over 300 signatures, Mrs Youngs called for an end to “the erosion of the fabric of our local community through the systematic demolition-redevelopment of our local pubs in Hackney”.

The Duke of Wellington is the third Hackney pub to make the ACV list, joining The Chesham Arms on Mehetabel Road and The Prince Edward in Homerton.

The owners have eight weeks to appeal against the council’s decision to grant the pub protection.