Back in March 2022, Sunderland City Council’s planning department received an application for a single-storey building at 18 Warwick Terrace.
This included changing the use of a storage garage to make way for a hot food takeaway with associated extraction equipment.
According to planning documents submitted with the plans, the development proposed full-time and part-time jobs and aimed to “enhance the area”.
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However the application faced public backlash, with a number of objections submitted to the council’s planning department during consultation.
Issues raised included the site’s location on a busy ‘bottleneck’ junction and potential issues around parking, noise and highway safety.
Silksworth councillor Patricia Smith was among the objectors, saying the plan was “totally unsuitable” due to its location next to busy roads and its lack of suitable places for extra parking.
An online petition opposing the development, started by fellow Silksworth councillor Phil Tye, also attracted around 175 signatures.
After considering all representations, Sunderland City Council’s planning department refused the application on May 23, 2022.
One reason for refusal included the plans clashing with a policy in the council’s Core Strategy and Development Plan, or local plan, which aims to “improve the health and wellbeing of local communities”.
Council planners noted the hot food takeaway would be located within 400 metres of New Silksworth Academy and in a ward (Silksworth) where the obesity level of year six pupils is higher than 21% and for reception pupils, higher than 10%.
Another issue included the hot food takeaway use having an “unacceptable impact on the amenity of the area and the local environment by virtue of the generation of noise, disturbance and odour”.
Council planners, in a decision report, added the application would not provide a “satisfactory level of safe car parking for customers and staff” and “gave rise to concerns regarding parking provision and highway and pedestrian safety.”
The planning decision report goes on to say: “It is noted that the proposed parking and bin storage area would be located within the parking area associated with the convenience store to the rear.
“As such this area serves the convenience store rather than the proposed takeaway and this area will already be utilised by staff and customers associated with the store.
“Given this, it is considered that the proposal would increase parking levels which would invariably result in staff and customers of both properties parking on the highway.
“Given the location of this property at a busy road junction and the existing use of the parking area by visitors to the existing convenience store, it is considered that the proposed parking, servicing and delivery and bin storage arrangements would cause detriment to highway and pedestrian safety”.
The applicant has the right to contest the council’s decision by lodging an appeal with the Secretary of State.
For more information on the plans, visit Sunderland City Council’s online planning portal and search reference: 22/00676/FUL