Decision time for restaurant proposal

Oxford City Council ward councillor Susanna Pressel

Oxford City Council ward councillor Susanna Pressel

First published in News

A DEVELOPER’S controversial bid to turn three empty shops on the corner of Little Clarendon Street and Walton Street into a restaurant will be decided by city planners tonight.

Shirehall Properties Ltd wants to change the use of the ground-floor shops into a restaurant or cafe.

But the proposals have faced criticism from local residents, who say there are too many restaurants already in the area.

Oxford City Council ward councillor Susanna Pressel said: “We used to have some interesting little shops on that corner.

“And when the site was sold to a developer we managed to preserve the facade, with its wonderful old advertisement.

“We thought the six separate units would be retained on the ground floor, but three of them were promptly turned into a Co-op.

“Now the developer wants to turn the remaining three into a large restaurant. This is very disappointing and I hope the planning committee will refuse permission.’’ Council planning officers have recommended the changes be approved.

In a report to the west area planning committee Matthew Parry said: “The proposed change of use will not have a detrimental effect on the vitality or character of the Little Clarendon Street area, or the wider Jericho Conservation Area.”

It follows five objections, including one from the St John Street Area Residents’ Association which claimed it would “change forever the scale and feel of all retail or other units in the whole of Walton Street.”

A decision will be made by councillors at 6.30pm in the Town Hall, St Aldate’s. The meeting is open to the public.

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Comments (6)

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8:17am Tue 24 Jun 14

CowleyBoy says...

Tell me, how can you possibly have "too many" restaurants?

I suppose they'd rather it was turned into a charity shop or another wishy-washy "community" centre.
Tell me, how can you possibly have "too many" restaurants? I suppose they'd rather it was turned into a charity shop or another wishy-washy "community" centre. CowleyBoy
  • Score: 0

10:18am Tue 24 Jun 14

Quentin Walker says...

'...Oxford City Council ward councillor Susanna Pressel said: “We used to have some interesting little shops on that corner..."...'

If the shops had been well-supported, they'd still be there...
'...Oxford City Council ward councillor Susanna Pressel said: “We used to have some interesting little shops on that corner..."...' If the shops had been well-supported, they'd still be there... Quentin Walker
  • Score: 0

10:32am Tue 24 Jun 14

mytaxes says...

Maybe she wants social housing also.
Maybe she wants social housing also. mytaxes
  • Score: 0

11:50am Tue 24 Jun 14

Andrew:Oxford says...

Quote:-

“We thought the six separate units would be retained on the ground floor, but three of them were promptly turned into a Co-op."

Interesting...

I wonder if Susie is a member of the Co-operative movement? Labour party members usually are.
Quote:- “We thought the six separate units would be retained on the ground floor, but three of them were promptly turned into a Co-op." Interesting... I wonder if Susie is a member of the Co-operative movement? Labour party members usually are. Andrew:Oxford
  • Score: -1

1:07pm Tue 24 Jun 14

Paul0 says...

"We used to have some interesting little shops on that corner." No, you had a large building that stood empty, falling into disrepair, for at least fifteen years on that corner.
To be fair, there were little shops further round on Walton Street. But hold on, two of them were not "shops": they were the Big Bang restaurant and the Bodega bar! So much for complaing about putting a restaurant there and "altering the character".
OK, enough quibbling. I liked having small businesses there too, and I don't think developers should change the use so easily, so I have some sympathy for the campiagners. But where are we going to find the small businesses to move in? The rest of Little Clarendon Street has taken years to get its empty stores occupied again after the recession ...
"We used to have some interesting little shops on that corner." No, you had a large building that stood empty, falling into disrepair, for at least fifteen years on that corner. To be fair, there were little shops further round on Walton Street. But hold on, two of them were not "shops": they were the Big Bang restaurant and the Bodega bar! So much for complaing about putting a restaurant there and "altering the character". OK, enough quibbling. I liked having small businesses there too, and I don't think developers should change the use so easily, so I have some sympathy for the campiagners. But where are we going to find the small businesses to move in? The rest of Little Clarendon Street has taken years to get its empty stores occupied again after the recession ... Paul0
  • Score: 2

1:11pm Tue 24 Jun 14

Paul0 says...

"If the shops had been well-supported, they'd still be there..."
That's not right in this case. They were well-supported and most of them are now trading in other premises in Oxford (Big Bang, Last Bookshop, Liscious, and the accessories/gift shop that is elsewhere on Walton St). They only moved because they were on short leases and the buildings were going to be redeveloped.
"If the shops had been well-supported, they'd still be there..." That's not right in this case. They were well-supported and most of them are now trading in other premises in Oxford (Big Bang, Last Bookshop, Liscious, and the accessories/gift shop that is elsewhere on Walton St). They only moved because they were on short leases and the buildings were going to be redeveloped. Paul0
  • Score: -1

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