Seafront kiosk gets planning permission following petition

An example of a Coffee Cup outlet on Southsea seafront submitted with the plans for an outlet on Bognor Regis Esplanade SUS-160131-101444001
An example of a Coffee Cup outlet on Southsea seafront submitted with the plans for an outlet on Bognor Regis Esplanade SUS-160131-101444001

A coffee kiosk is set to be installed on Bognor Regis seafront after pleas to deliver ‘something Bognor wants’.

The Coffee Cup facility, to be sited opposite the Esplanade Grand flats, was rejected earlier in the year over concerns it would obstruct the flow of pedestrian movements.

But after plans demonstrated there was sufficient space and a petition of more than 150 signatures in support of the plans, Arun District Council’s development control committee granted permission yesterday (Wednesday, June 6).

After some councillors had repeated concerns over the proposed location, vice chairman Dawn Hall said: “Please don’t say no again to something that Bognor wants. We want to attract people to the seafront and all you are doing is complaining.”

The kiosk, which will create three full-time and four part-time jobs, was welcomed by the council’s economic development team.

Aldwick East councillor Trevor Bence said a petition on change.org had attracted 160 signatures, with ten times more support than objection on social media. He noted the plans would generate income for the council, crucial to its plan to save up to £4m by 2020.

“We are here to deliver what our electors want as far as we can,” he said.

“The support far outweighs the objections, predominently from the flats opposite.”

The application generated 29 letters of objection, arguing the kiosk would be poorly sited and would have a detrimental impact on the seafront street scene. Bognor Regis Town Council also objected.

But councillors heard the proposed location was the only suitable site, as the kiosk required a foul drainage connection.

Marine ward councillor Jim Brooks said: “At the moment I think this is in the wrong place and I do hope that a better place can be found as I would like to see this happen.”

Chairman Jacqui Maconachie said the previous objection had be ‘solved’ by the production of further drawings, adding she was ‘really quite bemused’ a ‘simple’ application could create extended discussion.

The committee approved the application, with two abstentions.

Coffee Cup is a family-run business which began in Eastney, Portsmouth, in 2007. It expanded to other sites in Portsmouth, as well as Portchester village centre. Bognor will be its first venture outside Hampshire.