Landmark pub set to be bulldozed

Brett Jones's campaign to retain the Ship Inn is gathering momentum.
Brett Jones's campaign to retain the Ship Inn is gathering momentum.

A LANDMARK pub which has stood for more than 250 years in Swinton is set to be demolished.

The Ship Inn dates back to the 1700s but has become a target for vandals ever since Rotherham Council bought the derelict site in 2009.

Former landlord Brett Jones launched an on-line petition called ‘Abolish the Demolish’ in a bid to save the building from destruction.

And Swinton councillor Ken Wyatt said this week it was a “great shame” to lose such a landmark.

But Rotherham Council ruled in a report that potential renovation costs would prove “exceptionally high.”

It adds: “Not only is the site exceptionally draining costs, it is a health and safety hazard.

“It is proposed that the former public house be demolished and the land cleared of rubble and restored to an appropriate standard.”

It is also proposed to re-build on the site at a later date.

Mr Jones accepted that the building had become structually unsafe.

He said “I am sad to see it go because it is a landmark in Swinton, but we have had to down our guns.”

Councillor Wyatt said: “It is a great shame that a use could not be found for the building.

“But it does not meet modern design criteria in many ways.

“It was assessed for listing, but didn’t meet the relevant criteria.

“There has been a lot of additions to the building over the years.

“I’m sad to see it go, but I’m afraid in this current economic climate we couldn’t justify keeping it.

“The costs to keep it there as it is are very high. It is a shame.”

Rotherham Council hopes to begin demolition work this month.