Plans to demolish an historic Rubery pub and replace it with a large care home have today been approved by Birmingham City Council’s planning committee (Thursday 6th December).

The application by Malvern Homes Ltd sought permission to demolish the former Cock Inn public house in Rubery Lane and build a modern, 4 storey care home to house up to 68 residents.

Developers say that at least 60 staff would be employed in the building once it is fully operational.

On making the decision, several councillors said that they were saddened at the loss of another historic pub site. However, the building was in a poor state and this was a good replacement use and well thought out plan.

The former pub has been subject to vandalism, theft and significant arson damage over recent years


Built in 1811, The Cock Inn in Rubery Lane is the oldest pub in Rubery. It has now been vacant for several years and was sadly subject to an arson attack in October last year.

It is said that the RAF were billeted at The Cock Inn during WWII and operated barrage balloons at Rubery Quarry, to protect the factories in Longbridge.

Although the 207 year old former public house has historic significance to the local area, it was never awarded any heritage protection and does not have statutory or local listing status.

After considering its heritage, a report from city planners recommended that Councillors approve the plans, saying: “Given the building is of historic significance and has no architectural merit requiring assessment, I consider that the provision of elderly care accommodation would provide greater public benefit than the retention of the public house building.”

‘Part of our heritage’

Calls have been made to preserve the heritage of the site. Former local Councillor Andy Cartwright (Lab, former Longbridge ward) previously asked developers to ensure a memorial to the heritage was placed.

When the planning application was submitted in May, Cllr Simon Morrall (Cons, Frankley Great Park) said ideally he would like to see the building remain. He said: “I am happy to finally see something done about this site. However, I would personally like to see the historic 1811 building restored as it’s part of our heritage and I know many residents feel the same.

“If feasible, I would like to see planners preserve and incorporate the building into the new development.”

Although this acceptance allows the building to now be demolished, one of the conditions of the approval is that the developer provide public art or information panel to identify the heritage of the site. 


  1. Doesn’t make much difference if a building has a preservation order or not: a bit of arson, a few brown envelopes stuffed with cash, a nod and a wink, and Bob’s your well paid planning approver! (allegedly of course!)

    It will be nice to have a modern care home in the area, it will complement the one built 4 or 5 years ago at the corner of Egghill Lane and Frankley Beeches Road

    • I know how you feel. And I’m sure a lot of people in rubbery feel the same. 4 storeys though…cmon have any of these planners been in a care home….how many of the elderly I. There will become prisoners on the top floors. Better single storey and good quality…two should be maximum…

      • A “4 story care home is unusual and does seem a bit of a bit of oxymoron,especially when the lifts breakdown or they need to evacuate for a fire drill.

        did they specify ‘elderly’ care home? are the developers planning to sell,rent out or run the finished building? If not the latter,who will run it?

        • I have tracked down the planning application number (2018/03511/PA) and viewed the extensive documents on the City Council’s planning website.

          It has been approved but subject to a number of conditions, such as landscaping, contaminated land testing, noise pollution, light pollution etc.

          Looking at the plans it would seem there’s a lift and stairwells at either ends of the building services all 4 floors. I would hope there is some kind of independent generator that will give emergency power to either lift if there is a power cut or failure. Although how staff will cope handling residents down 4 flights of stairs in matters of fire or smoke alarms is another issue.

          Looking at various renders of the building, it does look quite nice and fits in well with the trees from Balaam Wood behind it And although it’s 4 floors it won’t be all that tall given the steep inclination from the mini-roundabout at Rubery Lane/Ormond Road to the peak at the junction of Cock Hill Lane. As a consequence there will be a lower ground floor, a ground floor, a first and second floors.

          It certainly has to be an improvement over the current vandalised site.

  2. care home are needed and good carers .make the history of the building a theme ,old folk love history and even dementia patients go way back, its a chance to brill some good old times back and recreate a theme that the elder will im sure enjoy .create local jobs and homes is good its the way to go free up the hospital beds and give these elderly somewhere to be looked after . who know we too may need a place one day soon .

  3. There was a pub called the Thinbermill, it was closed and a developer said that they would knock it down and build a care home on the site, they knocked it down 4yrs ago and fenced off the land, nothing built on the site.

  4. Care homes do provide much needed employment locally which is all good news. However yet again this one will be in private ownership and from my own experience I know that even the most basic of accommodation will cost at least £750 per week with the most expensive being up to around £1500 per week, not many people in Rubery can afford that I think.

  5. Had some great nights in there over the years.
    Shame it’s gotta go.
    Pity it was not the bugle horn,coldstream,or the licky banker,
    3 of the worst pubs on frankley.


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