Caught in a TRAP

December 24, 2010 1:55 PM

Fawdon councillors and local residents are dismayed that the restaurant development on the site of the former Trap public house on Kenton Road will go ahead after a revised planning application had to be accepted. The council refused the first application in February on grounds that it was too big and out of character for the area.

The applicant appealed and the planning inspector appointed by the government to hear the appeal rejected all of the council's objections except for concerns about the residential accommodation for the staff. So although the appeal had failed, it was on limited grounds, and meanwhile the applicant had already put in a second application.

This second application made some small changes to the height of the building and the restaurant's capacity, and dealt with the inspector's objections about the living accommodation. The Council's Development Control Committee and the Council's planning officers have had little option but to accept the revised application although Councillor Ron Clark and three other members voted no, against the advice of the planning officers.

"We're pleased that what is a real eyesore will now be demolished, but we're still deeply unhappy about the size of the proposed development, and about the inevitable problems of noise and parking that could still be caused" said Councillor David Faulkner. "If the planning inspector had supported the council then I've no doubt that the council would have turned down this revised application" said Councillor Faulkner who sent in a formal objection to the application.

"Can I thank the seven residents who sent in letters of objection, those who signed the petition and those who spoke against the development " said Cllr Faulkner. "I'm only sorry that the planning inspector pulled the rug away from under us all with his judgement on the appeal. We'll be keeping a sharp eye on the development to make sure that the applicant doesn't step out of line with any of the conditions. I do wonder, in the present economic climate, whether the funding for such a large development will be found easily".