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The Tumbledown Dick public house

Information on the planning application for the Tumbledown Dick public house, Farnborough.

Tumbledown Dick artist's impression

Successful appeal against asset of community value designation

Following a nomination from the Friends of the Tumbledown Dick group, we added the Tumbledown Dick to our register of community assets. You can find more information about our register of community assets on our Community right to bid page.

The Spirit Group appealed against this designation. The First-Tier Tribunal of the General Regulatory Chamber made a pdf icon decision on the asset of community value designation [30kb] on  22 November 2013. The appeal was successful and the building no longer has this designation.

Planning application on the former Tumbledown Dick public house

Rushmoor Borough Council made a decision on the planning application for the former Tumbledown Dick public house at Farnborough Road, Farnborough in October 2013.

Committee decision

Having considered the report, agenda and presentations from both objectors to, and supporters of the applications, the Development Control Committee at its meeting of 9 October resolved to grant planning permission and advertisement consent for the change of use and conversion of the Tumbledown Dick to a combined class A3/A5 (restaurant/takeaway).  

Audio from the meeting

Planning permission and legal agreement

The applicants, McDonald's Restaurant Ltd, were required to complete a section 106 agreement by 1 November 2013 in order for planning permission to be issued.

The council granted planning permission, on completion of the legal agreement, in a decision dated 25 October 2013.

Objectors to the development asked the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government to call in the application for his own determination.  The Secretary of State considered the request and decided not to intervene in the decision. For details, see pdf icon Department for Communities and Local Government letter [29kb] dated 28 October.

Where to view the application

The planning and advertisement consent applications and accompanying documents are available through our Search for, or comment on, a planning application page. The application reference numbers are 13/00512/FULPP and 13/00537/ADVPP.

Public consultation on the planning application ran for six weeks, ending on 6 September.

About the applications

The applications have resulted in the granting of planning permission for change of use from a public house (Class A4) to combined A3/A5 (restaurant/takeaway), partial demolition of the public house building and of associated outbuildings, refurbishment of the retained building, erection of single storey side and rear elements and resurfacing and reconfiguration of the car park to create a drive-through lane with customer order displays, canopies and landscaping; and associated signage. 

Public consultation dates

Because of the considerable local interest in this site, the council extended the period within which representations could be made on the planning application, beyond the legal requirement of 21 days, to a full six weeks, starting on the valid date of 26 July and ending on 6 September.

Background information on the Tumbledown Dick site

The Tumbledown Dick public house has been closed since 2008. The site, which is in private ownership, was identified in the Farnborough town centre prospectus as suitable for re-use or redevelopment.

We were keen to see the site brought back into use, as it is an important part of the overall regeneration of Farnborough. However, it was up to the owners or those with other interests in the site to make proposals for how their land might be developed. This is usually through the submission of a planning application, although pre-application discussions often take place between an applicant and the council before an application is submitted.

Interest in the Tumbledown Dick

The site of the Tumbledown Dick is the subject of considerable interest. Some local people were concerned about the proposals and made clear they wanted to see the building preserved and refurbished.

Those who supported the retention of the building suggested that it is of significant age and should be considered for inclusion on English Heritage's statutory list of buildings of architectural or historic interest, which would give it 'listed' status. 

Independent consultant's report

So that we could get an impartial and expert view on the history, age and interest of the existing building, we commissioned Turley Associates, a consultancy with expertise in the field of historic buildings, to carry out research and an inspection of the building, to report their findings and to assess the building against the criteria used by English Heritage when considering if a building is worthy of listing. This work cost £3,300.

You can view the pdf icon consultant's report [911kb].

We also made a copy of the report available to English Heritage.

Friends of the Tumbledown Dick heritage report

The Friends of the Tumbledown Dick, who are campaigning for the retention of the building, have issued their own heritage report, which you can read on the Friends of the Tumbledown Dick website.

English Heritage's assessment

At the request of local campaigners,  English Heritage assessed the Tumbledown Dick for listing, but concluded that from the evidence available, it lacked the special architectural and historical interest required to qualify for listing. For more details, see the pdf icon English Heritage assessment report [57kb], published on 11 January 2013.

The Friends of the Tumbledown Dick group requested a review of this decision. The Listing Review Officer at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport carried out this review and his decision was published on 25 February. This confirmed the original decision, and concluded that the additional evidence submitted was not sufficient to support addition of the Tumbledown Dick, Farnborough Road, Farnborough to the statutory list. For more details, see the pdf icon review decision [310kb] from the Department for Culture Media and Sport.

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