A DEFIANT pub boss has struck an eleventh hour deal with council bosses after being served with a closure notice.

The landlord of the Hare and Hounds, in High Garrett, had vowed his business “wouldn’t go down without a fight” following noise complaints from neighbours.

Since reopening, the business, which admits it used to be a quiet country pub, has seen a massive influx of customers.

During lockdown the pub converted its large garden to accommodate customers, increasing the capacity from less than 50 indoors to 300 inside and out.

The pub has also started to host live music on Saturdays with acts, excluding bands, performing in the garden.

Owner Michael Campbell, who took over the business four years ago, says the move has helped the pub get to its full potential.

But the pub was facing a three-month closure of its garden area after Braintree Council threatened to take the Hare and Hounds to court over numerous noise complaints.

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The council said it received more than 30 complaints from residents since April 16.

It also stated six council officers investigated the complaints and verified them.

Mr Campbell, 27, said the closure would put the pub’s future at risk, with the loss of 36 jobs.

He said: “We have suffered enough through national and local lockdowns and now they want to close us again.

“Without the garden our capacity would drop by 260 to around 46 but 40 people wouldn’t even cover the bills.”

He added: “I feel like I’ve been let down by the council. We’ve done everything they asked us to do.

“We will not go down without a fight.”

Council representatives officially served the pub with a closure notice on Monday.

It meant the pub’s garden would have to remain closed for 48 hours.

The matter was due to go before Ipswich Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday.

But both sides managed to reach an agreement at the eleventh hour.

Mr Campbell said the deal enabled him to reopen the beer garden but matters were still ongoing.

As a result, the pub was able to open that evening following the Euro 2020 match between England and Germany.

Braintree Council confirmed a deal had been reached between the legal teams.

A council spokesman said: “The council served a closure notice on the pub on June 28.

“This had the immediate effect of prohibiting the use of the outdoor area for a period of up to 48 hours.

“The matter was due to be heard at Ipswich Magistrates’ Court to determine whether to grant a closure order for the outdoor area, which would be in place for a period of three months.

“However, the council and the owner of the Hare and Hounds have been able to reach an agreement that safeguards against future noise nuisances arising from the use of the outdoor area at the pub. As a result the hearing did not take place.”