Controversial plans to turn a once-popular music venue into a mosque and community centre have been axed over insufficient car parking, it has been revealed.
The Burton branch of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association UK hoped to hold meetings, prayers, and religious ceremonies at the former Wetmore Whistle, in Wetmore Road, Burton, which has been closed for more than two years.
However, it has been revealed the application submitted to East Staffordshire Borough Council has been withdrawn by the applicants before a decision was made.
A lack of parking for the amount of people predicted to attend the mosque and community centre was confirmed as the reason for the withdrawal, and that the council would be minded to reject the proposal.
Many Burton Mail readers also claimed the parking would not be sufficient and did not agree with the proposals.
The Burton-based Ahmadiyya Muslim Association UK has been established since 2013 and members come from Burton, Derby and Stoke-on-Trent. There are approximately 105 members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Association UK. Of these members, 50 live in Burton, 45 in Derby and 10 in Stoke-on-Trent.
The association hoped the old pub building would have provided a permanent base for its activities. Existing activities currently take place at members' homes, and two centres used in Burton and in the Halqa of Derby. Meetings and classes within Burton currently take place in Anglesey House.
The pub’s current car park has space for eight to 10 vehicles, and a transport assessment submitted by the applicants said there would be no more than 10 visitors to the centre at a time.
The council report added: "It is considered that of the 105 members of the Burton Jamaat only a proportion of these will visit the proposed mosque and community centre at any one time and these will be outside of the typical peak hour periods.
"It is envisaged that during the busiest period of operation (Friday afternoon prayers) there will be approximately 30 people at the proposed mosque/community centre.”
The assessment considered the parking provision to be sufficient, adding that there is available capacity within the car park across the road or on street within the vicinity of the site frontage.
The report said the on-road and on-site car parking totals 16/17 spaces.