Strand Bike Hire Shop Conversion Rejected By Planning Inspector

bike hire shopThe owner of the former Buccabu bike hire shop on The Strand won’t be able to convert the property into residential accommodation after a planning appeal was rejected.

But the Planning Inspector didn’t uphold the Council’s argument that it would affect the retail viability of Hugh Town.

The scheme, to create a two-bedroom ground floor apartment, was first rejected by Scilly’s Planning Committee in February last year.

They said that it would create an ‘open market’ home with no controls on who would occupy it and result in a loss of retail space in the town.

Planners also felt the conversion would affect the privacy of two new social housing units being built behind, at Well Cross.

The application was resubmitted in March 2015, addressing some of those concerns, but was again rejected.

The applicant took the case to appeal, and a planning inspector, Nick Fagan, visited Scilly in February to assess the application.

Mr Fagan rejected the scheme, because he said it would “give rise to unacceptable living conditions either for the neighbours or the proposed flat’s occupiers.”

He also said the lack of a Section 106 agreement restricting the flat’s occupancy to key workers was contrary to the Local Plan.

But controversially, the inspector rejected the Council’s argument that the loss of a retail unit would harm the viability of Hugh Town as a shopping centre.

Mr Fagan said most of the properties on The Strand are used as residential accommodation.

And he said it does, “not seem surprising that a retail unit in this location may struggle to be viable,” given the islands’ population of only approximately 2,000 people and the loss of the helicopter service.

The ruling could call into question other recent decisions made by the Council to reject the conversion of retail space into residential accommodation.

In November, a plan to convert the neighbouring ‘Man of War ‘ shop on The Strand into a one-bedroom flat was turned down, again partly because of the loss of retail space.

At the time, Cllr Richard McCarthy said it would be “unwise” to approve the plans before the outcome of the Buccabu planning appeal was known.

11 Responses to Strand Bike Hire Shop Conversion Rejected By Planning Inspector

  1. Josafine fagan April 1, 2016 at 7:03 pm

    Don’t think so work is under way as we type

  2. Skewer April 1, 2016 at 1:00 pm

    Yes, apparently McDonald’s are opening a franchise there

    • Colonel Sanders April 1, 2016 at 11:58 pm

      Not flippin likely! Party bucket time folks, finger licken good food is coming to town

      • S.Gull April 2, 2016 at 12:38 pm

        Yummy, pickin’s are looking good this season

  3. Ian T. April 1, 2016 at 10:20 am

    Err… what effect does the loss of the helicopter service have on the viability of a retail business on The Strand…???

    • Anne Collins April 2, 2016 at 11:44 pm

      Err… I don’t know Ian,
      Could it be that our transport options are limited and that the helicopter quite often flew when Lands End was fogbound and that it offered a more convenient journey start location and that as a novel means of transport it provided an impetus to visit in its own right?
      Could it be that since its demise we are viewed*(rightly or wrongly) as less accessible which has been reflected by the Islands being less accessed?
      Could it be that as contributing factor to reduced footfall it has been unhelpful to most if not all sectors of business life on the islands…???

      I had thought that your raison d’être was to routinely state the glaringly obvious.

      • Ian T. April 4, 2016 at 10:05 am

        Could be, Anne. As to me stating the obvious, it sometimes helps to remind people of same. For instance, if I’m involved in a car accident where someone runs in the back of me, there are many who would say it was my fault for stopping suddenly whereas, as I’m sure you know, it can’t possibly be. I sometimes feel there is the need to remind people of history as I approach 80 and have a long memory. I apologise to those who think this blog has no relevance to the subject.

        • Chargepayer April 4, 2016 at 8:04 pm

          If you were approaching 80 when you braked then your speed would have been a causal factor in your accident, however you are right nothing in your last posting had any relevance.

          • Ian T. April 5, 2016 at 10:40 am

            I don’t understand your logic, Chargepayer, but perhaps you have proved my point with your attempt at humour.

  4. Josafine fagan March 31, 2016 at 10:09 pm

    I understand it’s now going to be selling burgers etc fast food takeaway stile

    • High Lanes Drifter April 1, 2016 at 12:18 am

      That could be something of a hurdle to overcome.