By Connie Osborne 10/08 Updated: 10/08 11:10
PLANS to transform one of the town centre’s oldest shop buildings into a fish and chip shop have been ditched.
The applicant has withdrawn the proposal for the Cooks bakery building on the corner of Market Place and Evesham Walk, as officers were due to recommend to councillors on the planning committee to turn down the proposal.
A spokesman for Redditch Borough Council said: “Shops in that area are only permitted to change from A1 retail use if it would not result in a continuous non-retail frontage of more than two shops, or roughly 12 metres.
“This was not the case with this application and so it would have been recommended for refusal.”
The decision was supported by planning policy which restricts the amount of non-retail shops in the town, making sure the size of the shopping area does not reduce.
The proposed changes would have seen Cooks replaced with The Sea Lion fish and kebabs takeaway.
Although the building is not listed and has no architectural significance, it has been ever present in Redditch’s town centre since at least the 1900s.
The traditional shop front, which has remained largely unaltered for more than 100 years, would have been removed and changed to floor-to-ceiling glass panels set in aluminium frames, sparking anger in many residents.
Ros Sidaway from the Redditch Town Centre Partnership said she was pleased the application had been withdrawn.
“The partnership did not feel it was appropriate for a building which has so much importance in the town, it would have damaged the look of it,” she added.
“A lot of the old style windows and fronts have disappeared in Redditch and this is another that could have gone.”
She added there were already enough chip shops and takeaways in the town.
“There are better places for a chip shop to be located, not facing the conservation area of Church Green. An independent bakery or gift shop would be far more suited.”
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