Empty pub could end life as accommodation for Sunderland students

Councillor Barbara McClennan accepting a petition from Ray Boddy and concerned residents unhappy about plans to turn the former Eastenders pub into student accommodation.
Councillor Barbara McClennan accepting a petition from Ray Boddy and concerned residents unhappy about plans to turn the former Eastenders pub into student accommodation.
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PLANS to turn an empty pub into student accommodation have attracted scores of objections.

Developers want to knock down The Eastender, in Sunderland’s East End, and transform it into student flats.

A planning application has been submitted to Sunderland City Council to transform the former boozer into a four-storey building.

If council planners approve the bid, the digs would be home to 41 students.

But retired welfare rights worker Shirley Williams is spearheading a campaign by the East End Residents’ Association to challenge the bid.

Members have collected 171 signatures on a petition objecting to the plans by Naji Property.

Shirley, 66, said: “Over the years, the area has campaigned against multi-storey buildings, so does the community want another one to be built?

“The university has officially stated that they are unable to fill the accommodation they have, so why build more?” Hendon councillor Barbara McClennan believes the city does 
not need more student accommodation.

She said: “The Eastender is far from being an attractive asset in the area, so plans to renovate and improve the look of the place should be welcomed – if the right proposals are made.

“This is not the case here.”

The deadline for comments, which can be made at council’s website, closes on October 29.