By Tara O’Connor, Local Democracy Reporter
A derelict Victorian pub in South Croydon looks likely to become offices as work has started on important repairs.
The Rail View in Selsdon Road closed in 2017 and has become an eyesore for many people living nearby.
In the same year the roof was ripped off the pub without planning permission.
But now, more than four years on, work on repairing the building has started with a new roof now in place.
The pub has sold to new owners last year after its value was listed as £1 million.
It is believed that the former pub has been bought by a local company which wants to use it for offices.
Councillor Maria Gatland, who represents South Croydon, said: “I am absolutely delighted to see the roof back on.
“It has been appalling, it has been a blight on the local area, people were really upset about it.
“There were squatters in there and locals were very worried about the whole situation.”
The company that has bought the building is unknown and yet to submit a planning application for a change of use.
Cllr Gatland said: “It wasn’t a listed building or anything but it was a Victorian pub and there were a lot of old features and bricks that were thrown away in the illegal demolition.
“Once the damage had been done the council served them with an order to make it water tight. A flimsy covering was put on that blew off in bad weather.”
The 1851 census reveals the pub’s first landlord was William Moore, aged 46, a carpenter and beer seller who ran it when it first opened. He lived there with his wife Sarah and daughter Mary, aged 11.
By 1865, Sarah Moore had taken it over.
Latterly it was owned by Punch Taverns which sold it on to a private firm before it closed.
Please make cheques payable to “MSI Media Limited” and send by post to South London Press, Unit 112, 160 Bromley Road, Catford, London SE6 2NZ
Former Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has encouraged everyone in the country who can afford to do so to buy a newspaper, and told the Downing Street press briefing: “A free country needs a free press, and the newspapers of our country are under significant financial pressure”.
So if you have enjoyed reading this story, and if you can afford to do so, we would be so grateful if you can buy our newspaper or make a donation, which will allow us to continue to bring stories like this one to you both in print and online.