Waffle cafe to replace English language school in Preston city centre
A new crepe and waffle cafe has been given the thumbs up almost next door to Preston's latest luxury apartment development.
Plans submitted to the city council to convert the ground floor of the Preston Academy of English in Ormskirk Road into a restaurant/takeaway have been approved.
The applicant says the cafe idea "will help towards revitalising this part of Preston city centre which has been under segments of deprivation since the Tithebarn Scheme collapsed several years ago."
The building, in the city's Markets Quarter and close to the Bishopgate Gardens project, has been used as a language college since 2014.
The cafe will take over the ground floor, with the academy continuing to offer English courses to overseas students on the first floor.
Bishopgate Gardens is a development of 130 luxury apartments which is expected to be completed next year. The scheme is a redevelopment of two former Department of Work and Pensions office blocks - Red Rose House and Elizabeth House.
The Crepe and Waffle Stop is the idea of businessman Marzena Kucha Bacewiz. A planning statement to the city council says: "This will not only enhance the area but also the social aspect of the community.
"Due to the current pandemic many food establishments have had to close. This will mean there will be a requirement for more similar outlets once the 'lockdown' is eased and there is increased social interaction."
The Markets Quarter is undergoing radical change with the old indoor market hall and multi-storey car park having been demolished to make way for a huge cinema and entertainments complex.
The proposed opening hours of the crepe/waffle cafe are 6am to 9pm every day.
One letter of objection was received by the council citing a proliferation of hot food takeaways and food and drink businesses in the area. The complainant also claimed it would have an unacceptable impact on the viability of local business and the location was unsuitable due to low footfall in the area.
In granting the change of use, a report by a planning officer said: "It is considered that the proposed hot food takeaway for crepes, waffle, sandwiches and hot drinks is a complementary use that would support the vitality and viability of the centre.
"Moreover, the increased numbers of food and drink businesses is common within cities and the location for this type of use within the city centre is considered to be the most appropriate.
"The principle of the proposal is therefore considered to be acceptable."