Worthing pub could be demolished to make way for flats

New plans to demolish a Worthing town-centre pub and build flats on the site have been lodged.

If approved, the derelict Wheatsheaf building, in Richmond Road, would be demolished and replaced with a four-storey block.

It would comprise five one-bedroom flats and three two-bedroom flats, along with associated bin and cycle storage, according to plans submitted to Worthing Borough Council.

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In May last year, the council’s planning committee rejected plans to replace the derelict building with a three-storey block of eight flats with commercial space on the ground floor.

Firefighters at the derelict Wheatsheaf building last year

The plans were turned down on grounds which included overdevelopment, the harmful impact it would have on a conservation area and the lack of outdoor space and privacy for residents.

Just weeks later, on July 4, the building was targeted by arsonists.

Four fire engines and West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service’s command support unit were sent and found the building well alight.

At the time, a fire service spokesman told the Herald the first and second floors were severely damaged by the fire before crews managed to extinguish it.

The Wheatsheaf is just one of several pubs to close its doors in recent years. Others include The Clifton Arms, The Jolly Brewers, The Dolphin and The Sir Timothy Shelley.

Despite the closures, Worthing is now home to a burgeoning micropub scene, including the Brooksteed Alehouse, Georgi Fin, Green Man and the Grizzly Bear.