Crooked House inquiry pushed to 2025

Credit: The Crooked House

The owners of the demolished Crooked House pub in Dudley will not face a public inquiry until spring 2025 after they requested the date to be postponed.

ATE Farms was served an enforcement notice in February by South Staffordshire Council, to rebuild the pub to its original form within the next three years. 

The notice was served to the business as well as its director, George Adam Taylor, and former director Carly Taylor, who stepped down in December.

The Crooked house was demolished by ATE Farms, just days after a suspected arson attack. 

South Staffordshire Council says it has accepted the request to postpone the inquiry and that it is preferable to deal with the appeal following any potential separate court action relating to the fire.

Its inspector said that the inquiry should not be delayed indefinitely and will plan for it to be moved from August 2024 to spring 2025. 

The pub, which was originally built in 1765, was sold by Marstons to a “private buyer for alternative use” in August and was “unlikely to open its doors again”.

But the landmark caught fire days later in a suspected arson attack and was then demolished by ATE Farms two days after the blaze, all whilst police said an investigation into the cause of the fire was ongoing. Six people have since been arrested in connection with the fire and remain on bail. 

ATE Farms is registered to the same address as Himley Environmental – the company that runs the quarry and landfill next to the site.