Councillors approve Chichester ‘micro-pub’

No 150 St Pancras, which could become the Old Antique Brewery
No 150 St Pancras, which could become the Old Antique Brewery

A ‘micro-pub’ could be set to come to Chichester.

Chichester District Council’s alcohol and licensing sub-committee today (November 24) gave the go-ahead for The Old Antique Brewery pub at 150 St Pancras - between the Thai House Restaurant and Kwik Fit centre.

However the applicant has been forced to launch a planning appeal after the district council’s planning committee turned down an application for a change of use of the Grade II listed building.

The Campaign for Real Ale organisation (CAMRA) has also pledged its support for the ‘niche’ St Pancras pub catering for the ‘real ale and cider enthusiast’.

Councillors have granted the Old Antique Brewery a license to open everyday from 10am-12.30am.

Director of the Old Antique Brewery Ltd, Lawrence Keen said the micro brewery concept had grown in popularity over the last ten years and was ‘an alternative to the common modern pub and more of a return to the old fashioned tavern or ale house.’

“The micro pub will offer real ales, wines and ciders,” said Mr Keen, who lives in Chichester and runs four pubs across London.

He added: “The target audience and expected customer base will probably be 40+ with an average age of around 55.

“That said, real ale and craft beers are growing in popularity and the pub would welcome a younger age group as long as the behaviour is in keeping the micro-pub ethos.

“In short, the demographic is not one of anti-social yobs.

“The absence of games machines, music and televisions for sporting events will help to avoid attracting large crowds of young people.”

Ales would be served straight from the barrel and food at the pub would consist of bar snacks and ‘pork pies, scotch eggs and cheese boards’.

Mr Keen said: “The nightlife industry in Chichester has had a bit of a ‘bashing’ recently - Thursdays closed and the Vestry had a bit of an unpleasant time.

“There isn’t one of these things around here and I think the population demographic does lend itself to a micro pub.

“The ambience will be that of a warm, cosy environment where one can enjoy conversation or perhaps a traditional pub game of cribbage or bar skittles.”

Mr Keen would be leasing the property which has been empty for some eight years.

Max Malkin from CAMRA said such a pub was needed in Chichester after The Hope Inn closed to make way for a Co-op store in Spitalfield Lane and the closure of the Bull Inn in Market Road.

“The younger more boisterous customers have no desire to go into this type of pub,” he said. “Micro pubs cater for the middle to older generations that like a quiet pint and a chat.”

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