New seating area outside Turf Hotel set for approval

An artist's impression of the new seating area outside the Turf.

Planners are recommending a new seating area outside the Turf Hotel in Richmond are approved.

The application has been submitted by the owners Enterprise Inns which wants permission to erect new seating, a canopy and planters.

The owners say the work will help the pub remain sustainable.

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Plans have been submitted to Richmondshire District Council and planning officers will recommend the work should be approved when councillors meet next week.

The applicants say the existing tarmacked frontage does little to enhance the grade two listed pub building.

The tarmac surface would be replaced with York-stone paving to the entrance walkways and a combination of resin bonded gravel and artificial grass.

A metal canopy would be installed as well as free-standing seating.

The applicants say: “The availability of take-home drink from supermarkets and offlicencesand take-away and chilled foods, together with increasing fixed costs  and increased tax on beer, has in so many instances accelerated pub closures – some seven public houses are closing each day at present.

“The Turf Hotel has unfortunately experienced difficulties in the recent past but since the recent change of Publican has been revived and now maintains its market share.

“The works will allow this to continue in the future.

“The proposals set out will make a positive contribution to the future well-being of The Turf Hotel.”

This application is being heard by the planning committee rather than under delegated powers because a ward councillor has raised concerns about the potential impact from noise to the adjoining Georgian Theatre Royal and
nearby residential properties, as well as loss of one on-site parking space; the use of artificial grass and and a potential pedestrian/highway safety issue.

However, council officers say the premises has always had the outside area and there have been no complaints about noise nuisance for well over a decade.

A report for councillors adds: “No neighbour objections have been received as a result of public consultation and Environmental Health have raised no objections.

“It is considered that whilst the present seating area would be extended slightly to the west, in close proximity to the Georgian Theatre Royal, this would be not significantly different to the previously approved layout of this forecourt area approved in 2006, and would be contained because of the new railings separating the seating area from the car parking space.

“It is considered that the proposals would not result in an intensity of use of the outdoor area of the public house premises and that the proposals would not therefore give rise to any significant increase in noise and disturbance.”

Read the report in full here.

A separate application has been submitted to repaint the pub and put up new signage.

Read more on this here.