Popular pub on A6 at Forton could be bulldozed and homes built on site

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A closed down, once-popular rural pub on the A6 at Forton could be bulldozed after it failed to find new owners.

If Wyre Council grants permission to the New Holly Inn on the A6 at Forton, it will be knocked down and replaced with six homes.

It has been on the market for two years following the closure in June 2022 of its last branding as ‘Mediterranean at the Holly’ which specialised in Turkish, Greek, Italian and Spanish cuisine.

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There had been hopes in Forton that with ongoing and planned housing estates on various sites in the village – including one neighbouring the now unkempt-looking New Holly, whose origins date back to the 17th century – would encourage interest in the reopening of the pub.

The New Holly Inn on the A6. Picture: Anthony CoppinThe New Holly Inn on the A6. Picture: Anthony Coppin
The New Holly Inn on the A6. Picture: Anthony Coppin

But those hopes look likely to be dashed if the New Holly becomes the latest of many once-thriving drinking and eating establishments in rural Wyre to disappear.

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Time has been called on numerous pubs in the district over the past few years despite the population boom, and hundreds of new homes south of Lancaster and in Garstang and its satellite villages.

They include:

  • The Crofters, A6, Cabus – demolished last year and now the site of a new rest home;
  • The Boar’s Head, A6, Barton – demolished after an arson attack in 2019. The 200-year-old building had been empty for some time despite a “community asset” campaign calling for it to be reopened. The site is now occupied by homes;
  • The Hamilton Arms, A6, Cabus, which in recent years had been run under various names – Quattros/Da Carmelos/Hadlow's BBQ Flames Restaurant and Bar. It has now been converted into flats.

Others now gone include the Punchbowl at Churchtown, the Golden Ball, Pilling; the Ranch House, Preesall; the Church Inn, Bonds and The Moorcock at Oakenclough.

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• The planning application for the demolition of the New Holly and its replacement with six homes appears on Wyre Council’s website. A recent meeting of Forton Parish Council voted to object to the plans.

There has been one letter of support and six objections.

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