PUB plans to bounce back from Covid-19 could ground to a halt as an avalanche of residents’ object to the “ill-conceived” outdoor proposals.

The Black Boys Inn, in Henley Road, near Hurley village, has submitted a licensing application to play live music, films, and other events as well as serving late night alcohol and refreshments to stop-outs outdoors as they have plans to install a pop-up area outside.

They also want to add 24 hours camping time during the summer season, May 1 to September 30, for people to get away and experience rural life.

The owners want to open and serve booze from 9am to midnight everyday – except for Sunday where they will stop serving alcohol at 11pm.

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Since the application was officially lodged, 84 residents have objected to the proposals, triggering a licensing sub-committee hearing on Friday, July 2, to determine its fate.

They called this application “ill-conceived” and “badly thought through”, fearing the 500 projected people camping and/or attending the events would cause traffic mayhem, crime and disorder, as well as “detrimental” noise to neighbours.

Hurley and Walthams councillor Maureen Hunt (Con) shared their “grave concerns” and pleaded to the council to refuse the Black Boys Inn plans.

Cllr Hunt said: “The noise from people in their cars leaving the event in the early hours of the morning will be detrimental to residents. After a day/days of drinking and jollifications I am aware people going to their cars, opening and closing the doors and starting the engines before driving off, gives rise to noise issues that will carry with the prevailing winds across the whole area – especially the bang of the car doors.”

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She also had concerns about the noise from the bands echoing over the rural village.

Thames Valley Police also raised issue with the music and suggested no more than 12 gigs should be exceeded, which was agreed by the applicant leading to them withdrawing their objection.

However, out of the dozens of objections, one resident spoke in favour, saying pubs should be supported and saved from being turned into more housing.

They said: “Pubs need supporting and we also have very different expectations of an evening out and entertainment nowadays, even pre Covid.

“Many people don’t just want a drink at a pub nowadays, they want an afternoon/evening out, an experience, and I think that this application will provide this and hopefully keep a local amenity going.”