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Planners reject al fresco development on Town Quay

Planners reject al fresco development on Town Quay

Tuesday 06 February 2024

Planners reject al fresco development on Town Quay

Tuesday 06 February 2024

An Italian restaurant has been told it can't install raised decking to its seafront al fresco area after planners took issue with accessibility and the design.

Sorrento, located at 27 The Quay, applied for a raised wooden decking area and balustrade to complement its existing al fresco area on the pavement, which is zoned for outside dining.

But planning said the proposed design of the scheme “would detract from the special character of the Conservation Area and the existing pattern of al fresco areas along The Quay”.  

It also said the step access to the new area “represents a retrograde step from the existing access arrangements on site and would not enable people of all abilities convenient access”. 

Concerns had also been raised by Traffic & Highways due to several utility service covers being located under where the decking was proposed. 


Pictured: Regulations for al fresco zones have been relaxed in recent years.

The application was deferred last year after these concerns were raised, seeing the applicant alter the plans to include shallower steps and handrails. 

The restaurant maintained that steps already exist for its main customer entrance, saying staff help those with limited mobility to enter and exit the building. The steps would be replicated at the pavement, with level access into the restaurant from there.  

It also proposed service hatches within the deck to allow access to utility ducts, but planning wanted to know their size and weight in case companies needed to carry out emergency work. 

In its plans Sorrento wanted to expand the dining space southwards and widen the pedestrian walkway, repositioning an asphalt ramp between the existing pavement, which it had previously raised concerns about because of standing water. This wasn’t opposed by THS. 

But planning said this would extend beyond the site boundary and would require permissions from the owners in the application. 

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