MYSTERY surrounds the ownership of a “dangerous” pub amid concerns it is “an accident waiting to happen”.
The Britannia Inn in Mold fared badly in the recent storms when roof tiles and coping stones were dislodged as winds reached 78mph.
Councillors fear the unstable nature of the long-time vacant building could result in serious injury to passers-by including children who use the route past the pub in Wrexham Road to reach Mold Alun School.
They have also bemoaned the dilapidated appearance of other empty pubs in the town, two of which are planned for redevelopment after planning applications were submitted to Flintshire Council.
But the ownership of the Britannia Inn remain shrouded in mystery after the Leader attempted to track down the owners to discuss the pub’s dilapidated condition.
Cllr Andrea Mearns told colleagues at February’s Mold Town Council meeting: “The Britannia Inn is really dangerous in its current state.
“There is a hole in the roof and the edging stones are also loose.
“It suffered in the recent high winds and something needs to be done to improve it.
“It stands right next to a pedestrian crossing and it is an accident waiting to happen.
“It is quite a well used section of path because of the children coming from secondary school.”
The building is currently being sold by Christie & Co, but there is confusion over the identity of the building’s current owners.
Punch Taverns has denied owning it, despite Christie & Co stating they are selling it on their behalf.
The Spirit Pub Company, formerly affiliated with Punch, has also confirmed it does not own the pub.
The Britannia Inn is one of several in Mold that have long stood empty, although new life could soon be breathed into some of the sorry-looking buildings.
However town mayor Robin Guest said: “This is a serious issue and action needs to be taken.”
Cllr Chris Bithell added: “If the Britannia Inn is in the state people are suggesting then building control can act and make the owners aware.
“This needs to be done as a matter of public safety.”
Andy Roberts, planning strategy manager at Flintshire Council, said the local authority does not have concerns about the condition of any other long-standing empty pubs in Flintshire.
“It is regrettable that this grade two listed building’s roof was damaged during the recent storms," he said.
“We understand the owners acted quickly to remove any debris that was lying on the roof in order to make the building safe.
“A conservation officer visited the site just after the incident and has since written to the selling agent requesting that they take urgent action to replace the missing areas of roof and make the building watertight.
“We consider this an isolated incident and are not aware of any similar problem existing on other empty licensed properties in Flintshire.”
Other empty public houses in Mold include The Derwen on Chester Road, The Boar’s Head on New Street and The Bridge Inn near the Denbigh Road roundabout.
News on the future of the Derwen remains static but there is hope that both The Boar’s Head and The Bridge Inn could be redeveloped.
Planning applications have been submitted for both buildings with The Boar’s Head potentially being turned into shops and flats.
The Bridge Inn could be transformed into offices should the application for the building get the go-ahead.