A Nottinghamshire pub director says a council’s unanimous backing of an extension to his venue’s car park will be a “great opportunity” for his business to develop.
Ashfield District Council’s planning committee approved the plans for The Royal Oak in Palmerston Street, Westwood, at its meeting on Tuesday (September 12).
The application asked to change the use of agricultural land behind the pub into a car park to serve the pub and its customers.
This coupled an extension to the pub’s existing beer garden as well as the installation of a new children’s play area.
The meeting heard the proposed new car park would wrap behind existing housing and would create about 26 parking spaces.
The beer garden extension will be based along the southern edge of the agricultural field to a depth of about 10 metres, with the play area to be based 13 metres to the west of the extended beer garden.
Both the beer garden and the children’s play area will be fenced off from a nearby and connecting field.
The plans were lodged as a way of addressing parking issues along Palmerston Street and to allow customers to park at the pub.
The meeting heard issues are regularly felt due to the narrow width of the road, existing double yellow lines and a limit to the size of the existing car park.
The authority received 105 letters in support of the application during two rounds of consultation, with residents overwhelmingly supportive.
Comments included the plans being “only good” for the area in keeping traffic flowing.
They said extra parking would “improve road safety” as well as helping the economy and supporting the only pub left in the village.
One comment said: “Although the proposal would result in the loss of green space, it would be better to improve the parking situation for existing residents.
“The road is very busy when the pub is operating, particularly at weekends.”
Councillors unanimously supported the proposals and said they will do what they can to help the business thrive.
Cllr Jason Zadrozny (Ash Ind), the council’s leader, said: “They’ve done a proper job of making this a car park which doesn’t affect the village setting.
“It will certainly help and I think it’s really important we support this application.
“Clearly, neighbours in massive numbers have spoken to support this application. You don’t normally get that.
“They’ve said this is a great venue which is a proper asset to the community and they’ve asked us to support this.
“It would be impertinent of us not to do that.”
Nathan Byrne, the pub’s director, also spoke to the Local Democracy Reporting Service after the meeting to reveal how the decision will improve his business.
“I’m really thrilled. It’s a massive benefit to the pub and to the community as well,” he said.
“Just having the space for customers to feel safe when they’re coming to us is important.
“They’re currently parking on the street, not being able to find somewhere to park or being put off by the amount of cars here.
“It’s a great opportunity for the pub to go further.
“It was a quick and easy meeting and councillors were very supportive. It’s nice to hear the great words they had to say about the business as well.”