Plans to convert a former pub into a shop have been refused after concerns about loss of community facility.

The proposals included converting the former Pullman Tavern, High Street, Grays into a shop.

Plans for 35 homes and a restaurant at the site were approved in December, but developers now say due to the lack of interest they want to convert the first and ground floor into a shop.

A Thurrock Council officer report states: “It is not considered that sufficient robust and meaningful marketing evidence has been submitted which proves the use as a restaurant is not viable in this location.

“The principle of change of use to retail on the ground floor is not acceptable, the council wants to retain the restaurant at this in this location.”