A pub in Helston is looking to extend by creating a beer garden out the back on land previously used by the JobCentre.

Martin Cooke, owner of The Red Lion in Church Street, has applied for planning permission to build decking and verandahs to create a covering smoking area and seating, on land rented from the Department for Work and Pensions.

The plans also include knocking through the back of the pub to create a new doorway to lead out to the garden, where plants and hedges would be added to screen noise and making the area more appealing.

In his application Mr Cooke said The Red Lion had been a pub since the late 17th century but in recent years had fallen into "consistent decline", leading to its closure in 2015.

He bought the property in 2016 and had invested "continuously" to improve it ever since.

Mr Cooke said an opportunity had now arisen to buy a large garden at the rear of the property to use as a beer garden and smoking area.

"The garden area has been left abandoned since the closure and re-siting of the local jobcentre. The DWP and their property management company Telereum are keen to [sell] the garden to me to reduce their financial obligation to the site.

"The garden would be landscaped to create an attractive area for patrons of The Red Lion to use for drinking, eating and smoking; shrubs would be planted to diffuse and screen noise from the site.

"I strongly believe this would be beneficial to the town of Helston, not least removing smokers from the street at the front of the property and creating a facility that is desperately needed in the town."

Helston Town Council is due to discuss the application on Thursday at its planning meeting from 6.15pm, before Cornwall Council makes a final decision.