Uncertainty remains over the future of an abandoned former pub in the middle of Devizes after concerns were raised over its poor condition.

Wiltshire Council hit the owners of 43 New Park Street, which was in use as The Royal Oak Inn until about 10 years ago, with a section 330 enforcement notice demanding an update on the ownership in response to these concerns.

The former Fullers pub closed its doors to Devizes customers for the final time a decade ago, before the Grade II listed building was transformed into an antiques store which lasted only a few years.

The property was then bought for £200,000 in November 2019 and new owner David Webb, of Webb Construction in Oxfordshire, lodged a planning application to partially demolish the former pub and convert the building into residential apartments.

Despite the council approving this proposal in 2020, any serious work on the building has yet to begin and the Trust for Devizes claim it has been allowed to “decay.”

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: 43 New Park Street, Devizes

Secretary Phillipa Morgan said: “It’s effectively been left to decay and it’s very sad because it’s crumbling and it’s a Grade II listed building.

“It’s been an ongoing issue for many years and we’re very concerned because it’s on the main road through Devizes and it makes the town look very scruffy.

“We want our town to look good and look as if it’s cared for so it’s frustrating… you can see the state that it’s in.”

Mrs Morgan alerted the planning officer responsible for the building of its condition, prompting the issuing of an enforcement notice.

A conservation officer reportedly told Mrs Morgan they agreed the building appeared “abandoned” and in a “poor condition.”

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: 43 New Park Street, Devizes

The council say it issued the notice in order to clarify who owned the building and isnow in communication with the owners to spark improvements to the building.

Cllr Richard Clewer, the leader of the council, said: “Concerns have been raised with us with regards to the condition of this property and we served a notice to seek clarification of the ownership.

“We are now working closely with the owner to seek improvements to the building.”

Not responding to this notice would have been a criminal offence and the owners could have been hit with a £1,000 fine.

The decision expiry date of the approved scheme is in November, 2023.

Mr Webb was approached for comment but did not respond.