A PUB’S owners could have to rethink its smoking shelter after falling foul of council planners.
The Walkers Arms at Golcar first erected the shelter when the smoking ban was introduced in the summer of 2007.
Landlord Michael McMahon suffered a stroke 18 months ago, but before his illness had employed an architect to ensure the design complied with the new law.
It had a retractable canopy but, as acting landlady Clair McMahon explained, safety concerns led to a redesign which they hoped would be approved retrospectively.
She said: “The canopy was approved, but when it was up we thought there was a real health and safety issue because it was ripped off in the wind.
“We could not make it stable and the worry was that it could fly off and cause a crash or injure someone.
“We turned it into a conservatory roof of exactly the same size.
“We thought we would then get the application in and be okay, but they refused it saying it was not in keeping with the area.
“The enforcement officer said we could go back to the original plans which would cost around £4,500 or use Yorkshire slate for a roof but that certainly wouldn’t be cheap.
“You can have a conservatory roof on the back of your house and nothing is said. Now we don’t know what’s happening. They say we go back to the original or this gets taken down.
“The only reason we changed it in the first place was because of health and safety.”
A spokesman for Kirklees Council said: “A planning application for a shelter with a permanent roof was turned down in November, 2007.
“This was because the proposed shelter, specifically the white polycarbonate roof, would not have been in keeping with a traditional building, or the surrounding area, and would have had a significant detrimental impact on visual amenity.
“As the shelter had already been built we have held meetings with Mr McMahon to discuss possible ways forward, including the use of different materials.
“It is possible that an enforcement notice will be served for the shelter to be removed.
“If positive steps are not taken then the onus is on Mr McMahon to resolve the issue, but we are continuing to work with Mr McMahon and another meeting is scheduled for next month.”