Decision due on new restaurant for Worthing seafront

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Plans to demolish a 1920s seafront shelter and replace it with a two-storey restaurant are to be considered by Worthing Borough Council.

The application, for the shelter on The Promenade, south of West Buildings, will be put to a meeting of the planning committee on Wednesday (October 16), with officers recommending that it be approved.

If given the all-clear, the new building would include a bar and restaurant, with a stepped external seating area leading onto the beach.

A planning officer’s report said: “The new building aims to enliven movement and activity along the promenade whilst offering Worthing a modern destination restaurant with spectacular views and a landmark pavilion.”

While not specifically mentioned on the application form, restaurant operator Bistro Pierre was the winning bidder for a long-term lease when the site was put out for tender by the council.

The application has attracted support and opposition from the public, with some saying the restaurant would be ‘a wonderful addition to the seafront’ while others said it would ‘set a poor precedent for building on the beach’.

A letter from the Worthing Society said that, while the society was keen to see the town move forward, the building would be ‘far too large for the available site’.

The council-owned shelter is included on a list of the borough’s Local Interest buildings but has fallen into disrepair.

A report to the meeting said it had ‘suffered following the antisocial activities of rough sleepers’.

It added: “Further to this, the central section of the shelter has been boarded up, allowing its appearance to further deteriorate. As such, the shelter in its current state is impacting upon the setting of the heritage assets within the area.

“It is considered that the redevelopment of this site in line with the proposed plans provides betterment when compared to the existing use of the site and as such would enhance the Conservation Area within which it is set.”

To view the application, log on to planning.adur-worthing.gov.uk/online-applications and search for AWDM/1303/19.