Walkford change of use to restaurant takeway planning consultants christchurchChristchurch Borough Council: Pure Town Planning have recently secured planning permission for a change of use of a retail unit from an A2 (Bookmakers) to an A3/A5 use (Restaurant/Takeaway) in Walkford, Christchurch, Dorset.

The redevelopment of vacant commercial premises is actively encouraged by the National Planning Policy Framework (2012) and the Christchurch and East Dorset Local Plan (2014). The application site had been marketed by a reputable estate agent for some time and no interest had been shown by any A2 operators. The estate agent approached Pure Town Planing and asked for assistance with improving the potential market for the premises by securing an A3/A5 (restaurant/takeaway) use as there had been a number of A3/A5 operators which had shown serious interest but were unwilling to occupy the premises until all the correct permissions were in place.

We put forward a compelling argument demonstrating that the surrounding area had a diverse commercial offer, which supports a variety of use classes and therefore the proposed development would be an acceptable addition to the area and would further enhance the services and amenities available to local residents. During the application process, several objections had been received relating to the impact of the scheme on neighbouring amenity. The number of objections meant that the application was put before the Christchurch Borough Council Planning Committee to be determined. Chris presented the deputation to the planning board explaining that in terms of noise and disturbance, the premises will not be open at unsociable hours and the applicant fully supported the proposed condition limiting the opening hours to between 9am – 10:30pm Monday to Saturday. Chris also justified why the scheme was deemed to be acceptable to all the Council’s professional planning officers. The application was subsequently unanimously approved by the Committee.

If you have a commercial premises and would like to pursue a change of use application, or any other commercially-related planning application for that matter such as; increasing opening hours, new shopfronts, new signage, canopies etc. then please do not hesitate to give Pure Town Planning a call and we would be happy to chat through it with you.