Regulars at an historic Ingoldmells pub are furious with planners for allowing their beloved local to be converted into housing.
East Lindsey District Council last week approved Bateman’s plans to close The Three Tuns on High Street for redevelopment as houses.
The pub’s loyal customers had urged the brewery and council to reconsider, claiming its removal would take with it a valuable part of the village’s history and a social outlet for its older residents.
Campaign leader Bernard Wise said: “370 customers signed a petition against the closure of the pub and wrote letters stating their feelings, but we got the feeling that the committee was not the slightest bit interested.
“We felt gutted at their decision as it’s another nail in the coffin for the village. We have only the church left that has got real history - is this next?”
Though none of Mr Wise’s fellow campaigners chose to present their case at the meeting, they found a voice in Coun Laura Stephenson who gasped: “This is absolutely horrible - someone’s business will be taken away.”
However, Stuart Bateman told the Planning Committee on Thursday that the family run firm was ‘not a charity’ and always had to be mindful of the ‘cold light of day facts’ .
He revealed that the pub’s output had declined from more than 1,000 barrels a year in the 1980s to just a tenth of that at its current sales.
The reduced sales, which Mr Bateman attributed partially to the intense competition from other licenced premises in the village, meant The Three Tuns was no longer commercially viable and would have to close.
Mr Wise, however, believes that The Three Tuns brings something unique to the village, which makes it viable as a business.
It will be at least one year before the pub closes and its historic facade will be retained.