AN APPLICATION to build a housing development on a derelict pub site in Hitchin has been rejected on the grounds of its “poor design”.

As previously reported by The Comet, an application was put in at the end of March to build the houses at the old Orchard and Anvil pub on Nightingale Road, which has been empty for three years.

But the application was rejected by North Herts District Council (NHDC) which cited poor design, no demonstration of effective waste collection, and no noise survey amongst its reasons.

It also claimed that the development could have an overbearing impact in the area, and overdominate local amenities.

Cllr Tom Brindley, NHDC portfolio holder for planning, transport and enterprise said: “A decision was made to reject a planning application on the old site of the Orchard and Anvil pub, Hitchin. There were a number of reasons for that decision.

“Among those were that planning officers felt the design was poor and did not fit in to the character of the neighbourhood. There were also some unresolved issues over waste collection which might prejudice highway safety and other factors that we felt would have had an unacceptable impact on the immediate neighbours.

“It would be good to see the site being put back into use, but we do need to be sure that any proposed development is appropriate.

“The applicant now has the option of submitting a fresh application which addresses these concerns or appealing the decision to the planning inspectorate.”

The development would have included 10 two bedroom flats and two one bedroom flats, accompanied by car parking, an amenity area and cycle and bin stores.