Plans to turn Boldon Lad pub into frozen food store face hundreds of objections

Plans to convert a pub into a frozen food store could be turned down next week following hundreds of objections.

Tuesday, 20th August 2019, 12:45 pm
Updated Tuesday, 20th August 2019, 4:09 pm
The Boldon Lad pub in Hedworth Lane, Jarrow. Picture: Google Streetview

Plans have submitted to transform The Boldon Lad, in Hedworth Lane, Jarrow into a retail space.

According to papers prepared for South Tyneside Council’s Planning Committee, the intended use would be a store selling mainly frozen foods.

Plans also included changing the layout of the car park and building a 2.1m high fence around the rear and sides of the venue.

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However, the plans sparked huge opposition from locals with a 240-signature petition submitted to the council.

Concerns included potential impacts on other local businesses, parking, opening times, noise pollution and increased antisocial behaviour.

Some objectors also questioned the need for the development and called for the site to remain as a pub.

Now, the council’s planning authority has recommended that the plans should be refused.

This followed objections from the council’s ‘spatial planning team’ who criticised applicant Punch Partnerships for failing to consider town centres in their search for a site.

According to officers, a ‘sequential test’ failed to provide “robust evidence” that there were no alternative sites available, including in Jarrow or Hebburn.

In action, the test aims to encourage a “town centre first approach to retail development” to “support the vitality and viability of town centres.”

Other council concerns included parking and noise pollution, with officers calling for extra restrictions around store deliveries and opening hours.

Despite changes to the scheme, planners have maintained that the site clashes with several policies due to its “out of centre location.”

A planning report adds: “The proposed change of use would take place on a previously developed site and is not considered to lead to the loss of a community facility that would reduce the community’s ability to meet its day to day needs.

“However, it is considered that the application submission has failed to demonstrate that there are no sequentially preferable sites available which could accommodate the proposed town centre use, rather than in the proposed out of centre location.”

A meeting to decide the future of the pub will take place on August 27 at 10.30am.