Police force pub owner to clean up

Wakefield Council and the police have joined forces to tackle the Wakefield Arms - the derelict pub next to Kirkgate Station.PC Robert Wadsworth and PCSO Rhys Dickson

Wakefield Council and the police have joined forces to tackle the Wakefield Arms - the derelict pub next to Kirkgate Station.PC Robert Wadsworth and PCSO Rhys Dickson

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A DERELICT pub which has become a magnet for drug addicts, drunks and arsonists will be cleaned up.

Police and Wakefield Council have used legal powers to force the landlord of the Wakefield Arms, outside Kirkgate Railway Station, to take action.

The pub, which is Grade II listed, has been boarded up since it closed in 2003.

Insp Dick Jones, of the Wakefield division partnership enforcement team, said: “Wakefield Council and the police have been working in close partnership to deal with derelict buildings.

“The pub is being used by drug addicts, drunks and has been the subject of an arson attack.

“This building has become an absolute hell hole for local residents and an eyesore for people arriving into to the city at Kirkgate Station.”

Under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, councils have the power to issue a section 215 notice.

This legally forces the owner of the land or building to improve its appearance, make it secure, seal holes and remove rubbish.

A section 215 notice has been served on the absent landlord of the Wakefield Arms.

But he or she has so far ignored the notice and failed to comply with their legal obligations.

As a result, the case is set to go before Wakefield Magistrates’ Court next month.

A council spokeswoman said: “This is an important landmark building where the public and visitors to Wakefield are faced with an eyesore and neglect. The notice is intended to improve the amenity of the area.”

To report a derelict building call the council’s planning department on 01924 306610 or West Yorkshire Police on 0845 6060606.