Appeal launched after Richmond cafe plans rejected

Finkle Street in Richmond. Photo: Bill Harrison.

An application to convert a Richmond florist’s shop into a cafe has been referred to the secretary of state after being rejected by district planners.

Plans were submitted to Richmondshire District Council last year to convert the former Flower Studio shop in the town’s Finkle Street into The Little Drummer Boy Tea Room.

However, the application by Gary and Dawn Spence for change of use permission was rejected.

The applicants have now appealed that decision with the Planning Inspectorate, who must decide on behalf of the secretary of state if it should be allowed.

The original application was rejected because it was felt the applicants had not demonstrated sufficiently that the building was not required, or viable, as a retail unit, which meant it failed to comply with the requirements of the local plan core strategy for Richmond.

Concerns were also raised about the need to install an extraction unit at the read of the building, which is in a conservation area.

But in documents submitted with the appeal, the applicants say the application does meet the requirements of the local plan.

The documents state: “We consider that the proposed development would accord with policy CP9 of the Local Plan and the proposed loss of A1 use would be acceptable as it is no longer required and cannot be made viable, largely due to existing shopping trends.

“Furthermore, the proposed development for a café (A3) would support the vitality and viability of the town centre of Richmond and the grant of planning permission for this use would not result in adverse impact upon the town centre.”

The applicants say the business will use local produce where possible and will employ up to 12 people.

They say it will have disabled access and toilets, with the applicants stating that no other cafe and tea rooms in the town centre have these facilities.

The tea room colour scheme will be based on The Green Howards uniform.

The applicants are from Durham where they have previously run a cafe in the city centre.

Documents submitted with the original plans stated that £70,000 would be invested in the business to get it up and running.

To view the appeal documents click here. [kofi]

1 Comment

  1. Is this another case of vested interests in Richmond again opposing developments in the town

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