Brewery insists it has no plans to change “beautiful” Holly Bush pub in Hampstead

Residents campaigning to save The Holly Bush pub from being turned into a restaurant. Picture: Nigel

Residents campaigning to save The Holly Bush pub from being turned into a restaurant. Picture: Nigel Sutton - Credit: Nigel Sutton

A campaign is gathering pace to protect the historic character of an 18th century watering hole after refurbishment plans were lodged at the town hall.

Fuller’s, the owner of the Grade II-listed Holly Bush, has now submitted plans to overhaul the building in Holly Mount, Hampstead.

The brewery wants to install new kitchen equipment, rebuild the chimney to tackle an odour problem affecting neighbours, and make further internal alterations including to original features such as the bar counter, which is mentioned in its listing.

When rumours of the refurbishment first surfaced some months ago, Fuller’s sought to reassure regulars that the pub’s charm would not be damaged.

But having now seen the planning application, many remain concerned.

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Jessica Learmond-Criqui of the Hampstead Shops Campaign, who has launched a petition to save the pub, still fears Fuller’s is undertaking a major kitchen overhaul because it wants to make the business more of a restaurant.

“It looks like they’re going that way despite the representations by the community,” she said.

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“They’re not listening to what the community is telling them.”

A spokesman for Fuller’s said: “Fuller’s have been consulting with local residents and Camden Council for over a year in regard to this planning application.

“The principal aim of the proposed works is to improve the kitchen extract system. We will also be conducting some essential building maintenance works and improving the kitchen. We would reiterate that we have no plans to change the character of this beautiful pub.”

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