Takeaway service could replace former Natwest bank in Collier Row following planning application
PUBLISHED: 07:00 02 April 2019 | UPDATED: 10:39 03 April 2019
A fast food restaurant could be coming to Collier Row as the owners of a former NatWest bank propose to change the site's use to accommodate a restaurant or takeaway service.
London and Cambridge Properties (LCP), the owners of the site in Collier Row Road, were unable to attract any interested buyers who would continue to use the property for financial and professional services.
These types of properties are classed for A1 or A2 use and include shops such as hairdressers, travel or ticket agencies, post offices and banks.
LCP has now submitted a planning application to Havering Council to have the site’s licence changed to class A3 and A5 which would mean that it could be used as a cafe or restaurant with hot food takeaway options.
The site has been empty since December 2017 and LCP hopes that by changing the shop’s licence, the vacant unit will be brought back into use.
In a cover letter accompanying the application, Aaron Bell from Kearney Bell explained why his client LCP was unable to find a buyer.
He said: “Whilst we have persistently attempted to identify A1 and A2 occupiers, it is clear that demand is not going to be generated and with the current climate being what it is, I can not see this changing in the foreseeable future.
“Of the feedback we have received, it tends to be that the shop is located on the inferior side of Collier Row Road or there is simply no desire to open a shop in a location where the footfall is so low that it does not justify a new store.”
LCP suggests that by changing the sites use to a restaurant, it will create a “significant investment into the area” and create more jobs in the borough.
Of the 103 people who took part in the Recorder’s poll on whether the site should have its use changed to A3 or A5, 81 voters - 79pc - said they would rather the site remain as a retail outlet or professional service.
Neil Elliott said that he didn’t want another takeaway service, but would accept “a proper sit down stylish restaurant”.
Angie Reynolds added: “Our streets are over taken with takeaways, betting shops, fish shops or fruit and vegetable places.
“We need a useful variety, like shoe [shops], grocery stores, post offices and banks as they are practically all gone.”
A decision is set to be made about the application by April 18.