Pub action is looming for eyesore site in Chorley

Enforcement action: The Swam with Two Necks in Chorley

Enforcement action: The Swam with Two Necks in Chorley

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Enforcement action could be the next step for a former award-winning pub which has become a town centre eyesore.

The move is still not being ruled out by Chorley Council as it attempts to clean up the site of the once popular Swan with Two Necks.

The landmark pub - in the St Laurence’s conservation area - has stood empty since it closed three years ago.

Ward councillor Adrian Lowe said: “We are continuing what we are doing and that is putting pressure on the owners to ensure they would do what they promised and that was to keep it tidy. They keep saying it will go up for sale but it hasn’t. It’s a key gateway into town.

“The council has a good site record of tidying up areas and that has been seen with their clean up days, it would be unfortunate for the land owner to stop this. It’s a well used area by residents, car users and as I’ve said we will continue to put pressure on the owners.”

He added: “It’s an interesting situation at the moment, if it continues we may have to consider enforcement action as it is now an everyday concern and it needs to be sorted out. Residents have raised concerns about it in the past and now the owners need to step up their responsibilities.”

Councillor Peter Wilson, deputy leader, said: “The building has fallen into an extremely poor state of disrepair and is now a blot on the landscape. It is extremely disappointing to see a nice building allowed to get into this condition and while the council does not own it we will do all we can to try make sure action is taken to either bring the building back into use or at the very least improve its appearance.”

In its heyday, the Hollinshead Street pub was one of Chorley’s most popular. Three years ago, licensee Denise Hogan and her husband Nick left after eight years.

In 2008, they completed a £160,000 refurbishment of the pub, which included new decking outside, solid oak flooring, designer light fixtures, and a roof terrace. As they left, the timber decking was ripped up, trees were cut down and fixtures inside were taken out. The pub was visited by council officers, police and bailiffs.

In 2010, Mr Hogan became the first person to be jailed in connection with the smoking ban. The offences related to his time as landlord of The Swan and Barristers in Bolton.