Plans have been been approved to enable a new retail shop and café restaurant to open in an empty retail unit on London Road.
Full planning permission has been granted for the erection of an extension over a private forecourt on the front elevation and an extension for a kitchen together with the erection of extraction equipment to the rear of the building.
Due to the recent changes to the Town and Country Planning Use Classes Order, planning permission is no longer required for the change of use from retail to a mixed use of restaurant and retail as they now both fall under class E.
The applicant Turquoise is a local company which currently has venues in Cheadle and Bramhall, where they operate a Patisserie alongside a restaurant serving Turkish and Mediterranean food.
The scheme includes extending out onto the pavement at the front to create a private forecourt, a rear extension for the kitchen and the erection of extraction equipment to the rear of the building.
The planning application was determined at the Northern Planning Committee meeting on Wednesday 14th September where the planning officer had recommended it for approval, subject to conditions that an odour control scheme and noise mitigation are both implemented and maintained.
Councillor Craig Browne said "From the perspective of London Road I actually welcome this application and believe it will have enhance the street scene from the front elevation. The issues i have with the proposals relate to the plans for the rear of the property and impact on the amenity, firstly of the neighbouring residents of The Avenue - whose properties sit approximately 25 metres away from the proposed extension - and the impact secondly on neighbouring businesses, many of whom have objected.
"It is my hope that these issues can be adequately addressed through the use of additional appropriate conditions otherwise the applications risks falling foul of saved policy DC3 of the Macclesfield Local Plan which states proposals should not damage the amenity of local neighbouring properties.
"So while I welcome the environmental protection officer's recommendation of two additional planning conditions, one relating to noise mitigation and the other odour mitigation, I am afraid they don't go quite far enough including with respect to particulate matter. For example the proposed air conditioning units to the east elevation are at the closest point to the neighbouring properties on The Avenue and these needs to be moved so they are sideways facing or that they have some kind of screening to deflect the noise. And secondly, the proposed flue outlet is at bedroom window height which is simply unacceptable. So condition AN5, as proposed by the environmental protection officer needs to specify that the flue outlet will be raised to ridge height level in the interests of protecting the amenity of the residents of The Avenue who otherwise will be forced to sleep with their bedroom windows closed all year round.
"In relation to noise mitigation a further condition is needed, in addition to AM1, as proposed by the environmental protection officer, requiring all external windows and doors to be closed from 8pm. Now it's worth noting other hospitality businesses, such as nearby Gusto and The Bubble Room, already have and comply with a very similar condition so I am not asking for anything that isn't already in place for other businesses."
He added " A further condition is needed in relation to refuse collection, again this is to protect the amenity of the residents of The Avenue. All refuse should be collected from the front of the building on London Road to ensure residents of The Avenue are not woken either late at night or early in the morning. Again, other hospitality businesses on London Road have this condition and comply with it without any difficulty. To be fair, when I met the applicant on site a few months ago he indicated he would be amenable to such an arrangement."
Councillor Browne continued "Although the application describes the proposed use of the premises as a cafe/retail offer the proposed hours of operation are 7am until midnight 7 days a week, including public holidays. I would suggest these opening hours are not really consistent with the usage described and given the premises abut the conservation area these extensive opening are not really appropriate so I would suggest, again the interests of protecting the amenity of the residents of The Avenue, these are restricted by planning condition from 8am to 8pm which still allows for 12 hours of trading."
Councillor Vince Fogarty, also spoke at the meeting representing Alderley Edge Parish Council. He said "Alderley Edge Parish Council refuse the plans as submitted based on the design of the shop front which we feel is not sensitive to the existing shopfront designs as part of the Alderley Edge Neighbourhood Plan code in retaining character features.
"It lacks any softening with the landscaping and equally it also it doesn't sit sensitive to the adjoining heritage area either. In respect of the actual front design we note that there was 2 new 3D plans submitted on the 1st February, the parish council wasn't made aware of these, we also note both are these are quite different and it is not indicated which one the applicant would be looking for. Equally as this is a front, full height structure it is not in keeping with what we already have down in London Road. We are aware, obviously it has already been mentioned, that Gusto does already have something quite similar, however this was approved prior to the adoption of the Alderley Edge Neighbourhood Plan. We feel that perhaps a poor planning decision then should not be used as precedent in planning decisions going forward.
"Equally the heritage plan that was submitted by the applicant reenforces what we've been saying, it shows all the softer designs that are in keeping with the character of the village, the majority of which use awnings and don't have structures that come out onto the pavement too far. It also shows Gusto that clearly does not sit right with the character of the village and equally does come out too far on to the pavement.
"We also have an issue with parking to the rear. This would take out two car parking spaces from the development of the rear and it is our understanding that the four remaining spaces would also not belong to the tenants of the restaurant cafe so therefore they have no provision for staff parking so in effect t has taken out six parking spaces that were used by Cedrics.
"It also makes reference to servicing to the rear and front of the property, as Councillor Browne has already indicated the rear of the property isn't great for servicing of the bins and it would also be correct to put any deliveries, as there is no turning circle and if if the owner of the parking spaces was to use them there wouldn't be any access at all at the rear.
"So in conclusion, Alderley Edge Neighbourhood Plan's adoption clearly stated that we need to retain and our characters and features at the front and the current designs, whichever one they go for as there are two of them, then we would be looking at neither of them being part of that retention of character and features. That is the reason why we would object."
When asked about the proposed opening hours and whether it will be a cafe, restaurant or bar, the agent said "This is to operate as a restaurant and cafe and not a bar."
He added "The cafe element would require an 8am opening and we would want to close at 11pm to capture the night economy for the restaurant. My understanding is this is entirely consistent with what is happening on London Road, there are a number of restaurants and even bars that open later. We, as I said, are will to accept a condition which requires the doors and windows to be closed at 8pm to reduce any perceived impact on The Avenue but we would like the premises to be open until 11pm."
Members of the Northern Planning Committee voted unanimously to approve the plans subject to 4 additional conditions: odour control scheme be implemented, noise mitigation to implemented and maintained, 8am to 11pm opening hours and to waste management plan will be introduced.
Plans for a retail shop and cafe restaurant can be viewed on the Cheshire East Planning Portal by searching for planning reference 21/1706M.
Alderley Edge Parish Council objected to the plans stating "The Parish Council recommends refusal of this application. It is considered excessive extension on to the pathway on London road which could lead to passing issues – Macclesfield Borough development plan CO 1 supports the primacy of pedestrian access and movement. Front design not sensitive to existing shop front design codes of AENP retaining character features, it is lacking in any softening with landscaping.
The siting and appropriateness of ducting at rear is questionable and is not sensitive development to adjoining land of heritage area. Refuse bins are sited to rear and access for collection in extremely limited– Macclesfield Borough Plan DC6 access is through narrow lane."
Additionally objections were received from thirteen properties objecting on the grounds that no other unit along London Road has a permanent structure to the front for dining, the permanence of the structure would cause a permanent restriction of the paved area, the noise and smells will cause a nuisance to the residents to the rear, no provision is made for refuse collection, the development to the rear would make it harder for vehicles to turn around in the alley to
the rear and the alterations would be detrimental to the conservation area.
The building at 67 London Road is a three-storey property with the addition of a basement and is currently in the ownership of Cedric's Chemist.
It was previously occupied by Lilies Fusion Cafe and prior to that had been empty for over two years since Cedrics chemists relocated to the new medical centre.
The new business will employ 5 full-time and 10 part-time members of staff. The proposed opening hours are 8am to midnight 7 days a week and the applicant intends to apply for an alcohol licence.
Plans to extend the retail premises at 67 London Road and convert the above offices into apartments were refused by the Northern Planning Committee in March 2019.
That scheme involved erecting a three-storey extension to the rear of 65 and 67 London Road and amalgamate the ground floor retail space to create a c.2,000 sq.ft unit.
Additionally the scheme included reconfiguring and extending the floorspace on the first and second floors as well as changing the use from offices to residential to create five two-bedroom apartments.
Prior to this a planning application to enable 67 London Road to be changed into a restaurant was withdrawn in September 2017. At the time there was no specific restaurant use envisaged for the property but the change of use was applied for to enable the premises to be marketed as a potential restaurant.
The plans for a retail shop and cafe can be viewed on the Cheshire East Planning Portal by searching for planning reference 21/1706M.