Fate of Cromer’s latest tea room proposal decided - it was approved

Plans to bring a tea room to Fearns Fields in Cromer have been approved.. This is what it could look

Plans to bring a tea room to Fearns Fields in Cromer have been approved.. This is what it could look like. Picture: MIKE LEE ARCHITECTURAL SERVICES. - Credit: Archant

A new tea room in Cromer that was sufficiently controversial to raise the hackles of residents at a previous planning meeting, has been approved.

The original application for the tea room near the bowls club at Fearns Park was put back for a site visit at the end of last month.

Nearly 90 letters, for and against, had been received by North Norfolk District Council, ahead of the meeting to discuss the proposals.

But the application came before the council's development committee again on Thursday, September 28, and this time it was approved, as per the officers' recommendations.

One of the councillors in favour of the plans was Sue Arnold, who said afterwards: 'The recommendation was that it would enhance the area, which we agreed with. Hopefully, it will be an asset to the community.'

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However, councillor Nigel Lloyd voted against the proposals, and he said after the meeting that he was worried the decision would set a precedent.

He said: 'It went against our policy of protecting open spaces and recreational areas. The officers felt the amenity value would be sufficient to outweigh that, but I did not agree and voted accordingly. I think any building on open space is undesirable.'

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Opponents to the plans at last month's meeting had raised concerns about loss of open space, invasion of privacy at nearby bungalows, and warned that the site regularly flooded.

But the applicant Karen Bishop said at that meeting: 'I hope we can create a community hub. I've been shocked at a few of the residents' concerns. We plan to close the tea room by 6pm each night.

'We will have disabled toilet and baby changing facilities, but they will not be for use by the public. I have every intention of running a successful business.'

The timber-clad building will sell hot food and drink with an outside seating area.

The application was approved subject to several conditions. One of these was that there be no external amplified music and a restriction on the volume of internal amplified music.

Another condition was that the tea room and toilet should not be open to customers before 8am and after 6pm daily.

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