REAL-ALE enthusiasts have failed in their efforts to prevent a Darlington pub from being demolished to make way for housing.

The Campaign for Real Ale (Camra) had fought to save the Forge Tavern, in Nestfield Street. But members of the borough council's planning committee agreed this week that it should be pulled down.

Surdev Limited was given permission to demolish the building and redevelop the site for housing at a committee meeting on Wednesday.

Consent was granted despite the chairman of Camra in Darlington, Ian Jackson, making a last-ditch plea to councillors to reconsider.

He said a council officers' report had listed unrealistic alternative facilities for drinkers in the area, including some clubs which had already closed and a caf.