September 15 2014 Latest news:
Safira Ali, Senior reporter
Saturday, May 21, 2011
A new American-style diner in Harold Hill has been granted planning permission.
The former Toyhouse shop, in Farnham Road, will be changing into a family-style restaurant.
The council has received three letters from residents against the proposal on grounds that it will cause a nuisance, litter, possible noise from equipment, and the hours of operation are excessive.
A petition was also received from residents in Farnham Road with 215 signatures objecting on the same grounds.
The Metropolitan Police Crime Prevention Design Advisor wrote to the council about concerns raised that local crime and disorder is “disproportionately high but that limited opened hours could be attached as a condition which should overcome the concerns.”
But the regulatory services committee, who met at Romford Town Hall last Thursday, dismissed claims the business will cause littering or will attract youths, because they said it will be a family-orientated restaurant not a takeaway, so there should be not littering outside.
The officer’s report recommended a closing time of 7pm every day except Sundays when it should be 5pm, but councillors branded this as “irrational” and extended the hours.
Cllr Steven Kelly said: “There is a fish and chip shop open until 11pm, a Chinese shop open intil 12pm. There are supermarkets also open late.
“The restricted hours are irrational and inadequate for a restaurant. There are 24,000 people in that part of the borough. We need to give the business a chance.”
Cllr Barry Tebbutt said: “The opening hours are not consistent for what they are trying to achieve. If this building is closed all the time there will be more of a chance of graffiti on it. But if it is open there will be more footfall in the area to make it safer.
“I don’t see how it can be the wrong type of environment for the area.
“It will bring people to the area who are more my sort of age. I think the change of hours is reasonable.”
The committee agreed to grant planning permission as officers recommended and to extend the hours until 5pm on Sundays and other days until 10pm.