The Butler pub near the town centre dates back to the early 1800s, when it was called the Baker’s Arms, but by 1830 it was purchased by the Butler family and thereafter it became known as the Butler’s Wine Vaults.
The pub was designated Grade II-listed owing to its 200-plus year presence and unique frontage.
Now, its owner Steven Stanton wants to redevelop the site to create a 19-room hotel attached to the existing pub.
Each room would have a double bedroom, with plans showing four car parking spaces being provided at ground level.
Work would involve the demolition of existing outbuildings containing a tyre fitting business and part of the pub itself to clear the way for an extension to the rear of the building.
Justifying the project, Mr Stanton’s planning agent Charlie Biss said: “[It will] remove the unsightly and dirty remnants of the previous tyre bay operation, regenerate the existing tired and dilapidated building stock and develop out the existing building a use class that is complimentary to the current pub.
“This will in turn make a significantly better use of the building in the public realm.
“Its street scene and foreground will be improved significantly.”
Designs show changes to the front elevation of the pub with a three-storey extension, with proposed hotel rooms overlooking Chatham Street.
Approval of the hotel would mean that there would be a total of 12 staff on the site.
The pub currently has five full-time staff. The creation of the hotel would require five full-time and two part-time staff to operate.
Summarising the plan, Mr Bliss said: “The client’s desire and motivation is to convert the old dilapidated existing outbuildings into a small scale locally run hotel which in turn will help to reinstate ‘The Butler’ to its former glory, contribute to the local economy and improve the local streetscape along both Chatham Road and Eaton Place.”
You can view the application by typing reference 230558 into the council’s planning portal.
Nearby, a plan to knock down a long defunct office building and replace it with 15 flats was meant to be decided on at a planning committee meeting on Wednesday, October 4.
This separate plan involves the demolition of 10 Eaton Place, which used to serve as the offices of Reading Community Learning Centre, and replacing it with one five-storey apartment building.
However, the plan was not discussed as councillors voted unanimously to defer their decision so that a site visit could be conducted with the accompaniment of planning officers.
Reading Community Learning Centre vacated 10 Eaton Place and now occupies offices at 94 London Street.