70 jobs await final decision

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A DECISION on the “final touch” to Wearside’s biggest business park has been delayed.

Catering chain Cloverleaf Restaurants plans to build a 270-seat pub-style restaurant in Camberwell Way, Doxford Park, creating up to 70 jobs in the process.

The firm bought the land from Sunderland City Council after councillors approved the sale last April.

The project must still win approval from the council’s development control committee and a decision had been due this week.

But planners said negotiations were still taking place over highway issues and further work was needed.

Planners said in a report: “While the proposal is considered to be acceptable in the (council’s) land use policy, there remains outstanding urban design and highways issues that require further discussion and consideration.”

It is hoped the proposals will come before the committee in the next few weeks.

The restaurant would serve the large workforce at Doxford International Business Park’s call centres, offices and HQs as well as other people in the community.

Speaking after the land sale was approved, David Allan, responsible for council resources, said: “This would complement the final stages of development at the business park and provide a very important final touch to the park.

“The restaurant would provide an amenity not currently available in the park.”

The two-storey building – which will include landscaping and a 100-space car park – would be built on vacant land to the north of the Sunderland Health and Racquet Club.

Planners said: “The premises will have a familiar style and promote a traditional local building fashion suited to the restaurant/public house operation.”

The ground-floor plans included two dining areas, two washrooms, a booth-seating area, a lounge and a “dining area with integrated entertainment”. There would also be a carvery area, kitchen and store.

The first floor is proposed to have three living areas with a flat for one manager and two assistant manager flats. There would also be a staff room, two store rooms, offices and toilets.

The restaurant would be surrounded by paths and patio areas, with seven pairs of lighting columns.

The venue would be one of the latest to open as Cloverleaf continues its expansion into the region.

A statement on the firm’s website said: “Our latest restaurant, Willow Farm in North Tyneside, opened in November 2010 and with more restaurants in the pipeline, we will be increasing our presence throughout northern England and the Midlands, bringing our unique combination of food, drink, comfort and service to an area near you.”