We have been looking back through the Epping Forest Guardian's archives and this bar was making the headlines five years ago this week.

A popular town bar is set to be demolished next month in a bid to make way for 12 flats and a restaurant.

Billie Jeans in High Street, Epping, will close its doors for the last time on October 4 following five and a half years in the town.

The bar, which had its image compared to a Turkish brothel when it was painted pink in 2010, will be replaced by four one-bedroom and eight two-bedroom flats, 18 car parking spaces and a restaurant.

District councillors gave the plans for the site the go-ahead in February 2012, after they were referred to the district-wide development committee.

The council’s eastern area planning committee had initially deemed the 4,000 square foot building too big and bulky for the site.

Bar owner Gary Smith said: "We are so sad to finally be leaving Billie Jeans and Epping.

"The building will shortly be demolished to make way for new flats and shops, but we have enjoyed five great years here and would like to thank the people of Epping for their continued support throughout.

"We have always known this day would come, but was dearly hoping we could make it till the beginning of 2016 enjoying a brilliant Christmas and New Year, so we could go out with a bang.

"We have met and got to know some fantastic people, all of whom will be greatly missed.

"I would like to think that over the years we have established ourselves as an asset to the town.

“It is a real shame and we are all devastated.

“We have faced a lot of controversy due to initially being painted bright pink.

“At one point we were even compared to a Turkish brothel and were being called the Soho of Essex.

“Then we painted the bar red, white and blue for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and finally we reverted back to the buildings original cream colour.”The bar, which opened in Epping in 2010, will permanently shut following its final weekend in October.

Mr Smith added: “We have been here in Epping for five and a half years.

"We are looking to relocate Billie Jeans as soon as possible and would love to stay in or near Epping if possible but venues that suit us are not always easy to find.”