Cockermouth shopping arcade is approved
Last updated at 22:16, Thursday, 14 June 2012
A plan to turn Cockermouth’s Tithe House into an arcade of shops, offices and cafes was this week given unanimous backing from Allerdale council’s development panel.
However, there are no plans to open the Station Road arcade in the near future.
Mitchells Auction Company Ltd was given planning permission to turn the former JobCentre into a mix of shops, offices and cafes, creating 20 full-time and 10 part-time jobs.
John Rockliffe, Mitchells director, said the company was pleased with the decision.
He said: “Following this decision we need to look at how we take things forward, taking account of costs and the potential demand for the building.”
“We don’t know when we are going to open up because we weren’t sure if we were even going to get planning permission and what the demand is going to be.”
He said that two or three businesses had already expressed an interest in the building.
Cockermouth councillor Sam Standage, who had asked the development panel to decide on the application, told Tuesday’s meeting that he was still worried about the traffic impact.
A planned loading bay was removed from the proposal after concerns were raised, although Cumbria Highways did not submit a formal response.
Coun Standage said: “I’m gobsmacked, to be frank, that the highways authority say they don’t see anything problematic about using South Street as additional loading or unloading.
“When the sales are on Wednesday and Thursday there’s extra traffic loading and unloading there.”
But council planning manager Kevin Kerrigan said that shops had operated without difficulty from the site on a temporary basis after the 2009 floods, when it became known as Main Street at Mitchells.
Coun Bill Jefferson said: “The building and associated buildings played a tremendous role in the regeneration of Cockermouth after the floods.
“That’s not a material planning consideration but it’s interesting that when it was wanted it was there.
“I can see no earthly reason why we shouldn’t simply agree.”
Coun Bill Finlay was concerned that it could house businesses at present based elsewhere rather than attracting new jobs.
But Mr Kerrigan said that Tithe House was within a new town centre planning boundary being suggested by the council.
The existing retail boundary, which it is outside, was drawn up before Sainsbury’s came to the town, he added.
Coun Finlay proposed approval of the plan, seconded by Coun Jim Lister.
Because of concerns over smell and ventilation, hot food cannot be cooked on the premises unless separate permission is granted.
First published at 19:24, Thursday, 14 June 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
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onward into the future cockermouth!!Good news for all.
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