PLANS to build industrial units on the site of a pub that inspired one of Bradford’s most celebrated writers have been refused.

A lack of a "coal mining risk assessment, was one of the reasons planners threw out proposals to transform the old Beacon Hotel site in Buttershaw.

The pub found fame thanks to the work of Andrea Dunbar, and features in key scenes of her modern classic Rita, Sue and Bob too, which was based on the Buttershaw estate and other areas of Bradford.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Andrea Dunbar Andrea Dunbar

It was also in the Beacon where Dunbar collapsed after suffering a brain haemorrhage that proved to be fatal in 1990 at the age of just 29.

Dunbar’s work was famous for shining a light on areas of society that were normally ignored by television, film and theatre writers, including locals to whom the Beacon was an important hub.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Michelle Holmes, George Costigan and Siobhan Finneran in Rita, Sue and Bob TooMichelle Holmes, George Costigan and Siobhan Finneran in Rita, Sue and Bob Too

In 2019 a planning application to demolish the pub and build 18 houses in its place was approved by Bradford Council.

The pub was demolished shortly after the plans were approved, but work on the houses has not begun and the site on Reevy Road West remains vacant.

It recently emerged that the plan to build homes on the site has seemingly been scrapped due to a lack of interest in this area of Bradford from housing developers.

Despite its link to Dunbar and her work, the Beacon had already been shut for three years by the time the 2019 application was submitted.

That application called the pub “dated” and argued there was little support for retaining the building.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: The Beacon Hotel in Buttershaw

A new planning application recently submitted to Bradford Council called for the land to be developed as an industrial estate.

The plans by Burley based Crag Developments, the same developer behind the initial housing plans, are for eight industrial workshops.

It says the low value of houses in the area shows that the planned residential development was not viable, and required the applicants to go back to the drawing board.

Referring to the earlier homes plan, the new application says: “Following validation of that application the site was offered for sale as a residential opportunity and so has been actively marketed for almost three years.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Where the pub once stoodWhere the pub once stood

“During that period the site has been viewed by the commercial, care and social housing sectors but without securing any development interest.

“It must be concluded that given the very low capital value of completed houses in this area of the city there is something of a ‘market failure.’ “The site has been tested for all residential uses without finding favour. It is suitable for light industrial use in terms of access and compatibility with the neighbourhood and is an unused brownfield site.”

But the application was refused by Bradford Council on Friday.

The Coal Authority had raised concerns over the lack of a "coal mining risk assessment" - pointing out there was a former coal mine entry close to the site.

Officers also felt the design of the industrial units - which would back onto Reevy Road West, did not provide an "attractive frontage" on the street.

And there were also concerns the units would cause highways issues due to the extra traffic to the site and inadequate servicing space.