Fourteen affordable homes are to be built on the site of a former St Albans pub after councillors green-lit the long-discussed plans.

The plans will see the former King Offa on the Cottonmill estate redeveloped after St Albans District Council bought the site after the pub shut in 2015.

The £5.1million plans were unanimously approved at a council meeting on Monday November 22.

The pub was demolished in 2018 with the site left vacant awaiting a decision on a new scheme, with these plans including one two-bedroom house, 11 three-bedroom homes and two four-bedroom houses.

Five of the proposed homes will be terraced along Wallingford Walk, with two detached dwellings in Abbots Avenue West. Four more detached homes would sit to the north of the site, with a bungalow proposed for Norman Close.

The council was given the green light to progress with the scheme in August, after being backed by their housing and inclusion committee and has now been granted planning permission to allow building work to get under way, once legal agreements have been confirmed.

St Albans & Harpenden Review: The King Offa pub before it was demolished. Credit: Google MapsThe King Offa pub before it was demolished. Credit: Google Maps

In a report for councillors ahead of Monday’s meeting, officers have said that despite the irregular layout of the site there was enough space to avoid an over development of the site, and there was enough distance from existing properties to avoid overlooking.

However, councillors raised concerns about whether too much was being included on one site, and whether the new residents would benefit if the layout was amended. 

Sandridge Conservative councillor Frances Leonard said: "It does seem to be just a bungalow too far, as far as I’m concerned. It might be a little more spacious, you’d get more parking. I’m wondering if we could sacrifice a bungalow to get a little more parking or a little bit more space, but I don’t think I can come up with a reason for refusal based on that."

A total of 17 parking spaces are also included within the plan but concerns were raised about the lack of planning for electric vehicle charging points and solar plans in the proposals; however officers said this could be able to be addressed at a later stage.