Councillors back plans for new ten-pin bowling alley in Diss

A six lane ten-pin bowling alley and cinema has moved a step closer to becoming a reality after councillors backed the scheme.

Chris Burnard, owner of Heywood Sports and Racquet Club, has applied to South Norfolk Council for permission to provide the alley, cafe and single-screen cinema studio within a 675sqm extension to the club's existing Walcot Road premises.

Members of Diss Town Council's planning committee has supported the proposals, despite concerns over whether there would be an increase in on-street parking.

Mr Burnard told the committee meeting on Wednesday he needed to provide a greater range of facilities because the club could not survive as a business while depending alone on customers using the squash, tennis and table tennis equipment, five-a-side football pitch, sauna and bar.

He said the bowling alley would be on the ground floor, while the cafe and cinema would be on the mezzanine floor, but the 50-seat cinema would not take away business from an existing cinema at the town's Corn Hall theatre because the films on show would be different.

The scheme would be in place of a scheme for an unbuilt swimming pool, spa, badminton court and fitness studio extension that was granted in 2010. The cinema would show family feature films and cartoons.

Residents have until January 25 to express their opinions to South Norfolk Council.

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