A HISTORIC pub will be converted into a community centre after plans were approved by Bradford Council.

The Green Man on Otley Road, Undercliffe dates back to the 1790s, but has most recently stood empty after owners Tetleys Brewery closed the building and put the pub on the market.

After submitting a change of use application earlier this year, the Al-Faiz Trust ahs been granted permission to convert the pub into an education/community centre. The plans will see the building’s ground floor converted into a community hall, while the first floor would be converted into classrooms, offices and a kitchen.

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In their application, the Trust said: “The centre will provide classes and support covering a wide spectrum including religion, charity, disabilities and first aid. Guest speakers will also be invited to the centre to give talks for the local community.”

There had been 11 objections to the plans, with some claiming the facility will generate too much traffic, and another arguing the building should instead be turned into a social club.

One two word objection only said: “Definitely not.”

However, planning officers pointed out that there was parking available on the site, and that the site was close to major bus and walking routes.

Approving the scheme, planning officers said: “As the proposal will bring an unoccupied building back into use, and will attract people to the local centre it represents a form of development that should bring with it amenity benefits as well as positive outcomes for the vitality and viability of the local centre.

“Externally the property will remain as existing when viewed from the public realm, but will clearly benefit from being in an active use in terms of its overall appearance and upkeep.”

One condition of the application is that the centre only open between 7am and 11pm.

The Green Man is named after the centuries old symbol of re-birth that adorns many churches.

The pub itself has a storied history. Last year Paul Jennings, author of Bradford Pubs and The Local: A History of the English Pub, looked at the story as part of a regular column in the Telegraph & Argus.

He said: “One in particular event caught my eye, reported in the Bradford Observer in May 1844, reflecting local tensions at this period between the native-born English and Irish migrants.

“It tells of how the band of the Undercliffe Orange Lodge, returning from a mass demonstration of Orangemen in the town, was attacked lower down Otley Road by a crowd of between 200 and 400 Catholic Irishmen armed with stones and cudgels, forcing them to retreat up the hill to their base at the Green Man.”