HOW much of an outcry will there be against the plans to demolish the Eden Arms at Rushyford?

Prominently located on a roundabout on the A167, it is as much of a landmark on the old Great North Road as the mid-1930s hotel the Cock o’the North, a few miles north, which was demolished 15 years ago and replaced by housing.

Read more: Landmark historic hotel in County Durham facing demolition within months

Losing it will certainly irrevocably change the character of the hamlet of Rushyford and make the road a blander place.

It is sad to lose a place that has for so long been a focal point of its area and in which so many stories – weddings and wakes – are tied up.

Read more: Pictures show sad state of Eden Arms hotel in Rushyford near Aycliffe

However, there are other old, large hotels lying sadly derelict in the area: the George at Piercebridge, and the Bridge House Hotel at Catterick, to name two. Tourists’ tastes are changing: the great roadside coaching inns are no longer the best way to visit the countryside. If the Eden is to be saved, someone has to have a great idea for it.

And if it cannot be saved, its demise needs to be sympathetically handled. It needs to be suitably recorded – invite The Northern Echo Camera Club in with all their clever equipment to take pictures – and its treasures need to be saved and perhaps built into whatever comes next on the site.

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