Wednesday, 30 October 2013

502-504 Wilbraham road

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The Council has recieved a planning application for Chorlton News between Chorlton Bookshop and Croma to be converted into a Cafe/Bar:

103494/FO/2013/S1 502-504 Wilbraham Road Chorlton Manchester M21 9AW 
Change of Use of ground floor newsagents ( Class A1) and 1st and 2nd floor bedsits (Class C3) to cafe/bar at ground and first floor with ancillary storage in basement and 2nd floors (Class A4) and creation of outdoor seating area to front and rear, together with installation of 2no. air conditioning units to rear and associated elevational alterations 

You can find out more information about the proposals on the City Council's Planning Portal at or by contacting the South Area Planning Group Manager - Roger Hall; Tel: (0161) 234 4536; email: 

This application has raised a fair ammount of concern locally. I've submitted the representation below to the Planning Committee outlining the views that have been expressed to me so far. There is still time to make your own representation by writing to the Dedicated Planning Officer, Melanie Tann  ( Please feel free to contact me on (07947383740; if you wish to discuss the application and please also send me a copy of any representation you make.

"There is a general feeling amongst those that have contacted me that Chorlton already has enough bars and pubs and is being taken over by the night time economy (particularly Bars and Takeaways) at the expense of independent and diverse shops. One resident said: "Chorlton already has more bars than it can sustain. I strongly object to planning permission being given to another." Indeed this application is situated in a former community newsagents and potentially threatens the vitality and viability of Chorlton Bookshop. The Manchester Evening News reported: "Bar opening in Chorlton 'could force popular book shop to close". A resident wrote: " do not think I am alone when I say that Chorlton people need the one bookshop in the area far more than we need yet another bar. To approve this application would be one more step on the road to making Chorlton a monocultural wasteland."

Residents are also concerned that the premises is situated within a conservation area and diagonally opposite the Grade II listed Lloyds Hotel. Some residents feel that if the application is approved it would "detract from the quality and spoil the nature of the conservation area".

There is concern that noise from the premises would detrimentally impact residents in the immediate area, particularly those living adjacent, at Chorlton Heights and at the south end of Oswald Road. 

There is concern about the loss of residential accommodation as it is in high demand in Chorlton and "gives life to the street when shops are closed".

Some residents have told me that they do not have a problem with the application and support seeing a derelict shop brought back into use"

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