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Hope on horizon for city’s 300 year old pub

Published: Thursday, 6th June 2024

Plans to breathe new life into one of the city’s oldest public houses has reached an important milestone.

The Leopard, in Burslem, is a grade II listed building which dates back to 1765.

Now a Listed Building application has been submitted for the site, marking an important step forward in the building’s restoration.

The much-loved building was severely damaged by fire in January 2022 following two years of closure during the pandemic.

Since then, Stoke-on-Trent City Council has been in regular contact with the owner of the landmark building and conversations have taken place around potential future uses.

The Leopard has been through various reconstructions and re-modelling over the years and latterly became known as a ‘haunted’ hotel which was popular with ghost hunters.

The Listed Building application will focus on the special heritage aspects of the building, such as windows, doors and roof. It will now be considered through the council’s usual planning processes, and the authority will consult Historic England before making any decisions.

A spokesperson for Stoke-on-Trent City Council said: “We remain committed to protecting this major heritage site and are keen to see it brought back into use to the benefit of local residents but we have made it very clear to the owner that we will not hesitate to take enforcement action if they fail to make any progress.

“We have made it a priority to ensure the building is safe and that there is no risk to the public and nearby businesses and officers from Stoke-on-Trent City Council and representatives from Historic England visited the site last week to ensure the building remains secure.

“We will continue to work with the owner, and Historic England, to bring forward a more detailed planning application. This building is of significant historical importance to the local community, and once hosted a meeting between Josiah Wedgwood and James Brindley, so we are committed to ensuring its historical characteristics are preserved for future generations.”

The Listed Building application can be viewed on Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s website HERE

Any residents who wish to object or make a comment on the application will need to use the reference number 70990/LBC and register on the system.