Historic Woolwich pub could be revamped if hotel plans approved

Ordnance Arms
The Ordnance block is about 140 years old (image: Google)

A historic Woolwich pub could be restored to its former glory under plans to turn its upper floors into a 17-room hotel.

The Ordnance Arms, on the corner of Beresford Square, would have its original corner entrance restored and 20th century alterations removed under plans submitted to Greenwich Council.

The first and second floors, which once housed flats, were converted into a hostel, but a retrospective planning application was refused three years ago. A third floor would be added if the plans are approved, with a mansard roof to match the pub’s neighbours.

Lita Homes, the company behind the proposal, says the pub would be retained. The Charlton-based developer is also behind controversial plans for 34 homes on Sandy Hill Road, involving the demolition of a derelict Victorian terrace. It has also built nine flats on the site of the Lord Clyde pub on Brookhill Road.

Ordnance Arms
This lightwell on the Woolwich New Road side would be filled in (image: Google)

The current building dates from the 1880s, and was briefly known as O’Connors in the early 21st century before reverting to its historic name six years ago. A number of other plans for the building, including turning the upper floors into flats and a youth hostel, have been rejected in recent years.

“The pub frontage will be returned to a more historic Victorian style consistent with its appearance in pro-1950 images,” a heritage statement submitted to the council states. “This includes reinstating the decorative columns and capitals, glazed tile stallrisers, and small-paned leaded fanlights. The columns and corner entrance to the pub will also be reinstated to match the original design.”

It adds: “The lightwell on the southeast elevation of the building will be infilled to full height to provide additional space for accommodation. It will be constructed of stock brick and the spacing of the sash windows will be a continuation of the existing on the elevation.”

A beauty salon constructed in part of the pub would remain, but would be made smaller to create more space for the bar.

Ordnance Arms planning details
Detailed plans for the Woolwich New Road side (see more)

The Ordnance pub is a few hundred metres from the Woolwich Elizabeth Line station, which is due to open within weeks, and opposite the Woolwich Exchange development site, where last week Greenwich Council approved plans to buy up shops and businesses so the scheme can go ahead.

Across Beresford Street, plans for a 298-room, 14-storey student housing block will be discussed by councillors next week. Planning officers are recommending approval.

Comments the Ordnance plans can be left on Greenwich Council’s planning website, while the heritage statement, containing lots of photos from Woolwich’s past, planning statement and design and access statement contain more details of what is planned.

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