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Lyme Regis: Restaurateur Alan Elmes' awning bid may be rejected
10:30am Thursday 19th April 2012 in News
A Lyme Regis restaurateur trying to create a Mediterranean–style dining area for visitors says he is frustrated and disappointed that permission for an awning may be denied.
And Alan Elmes, owner of Harry Tate’s tapas bar and restaurant on Marine Parade says that the recommendation to West Dorset planners to refuse his application is particularly galling as both the Town Council and the Lyme Regis Society support his plans.
The restaurant, on the first floor of the listed former Bay Cottage is over a cafe, which is unconnected to the business.
Mr Elmes wants to install a retractable white canvas awning to shade the first floor terrace, which he says would enable him to double the number of diners he can welcome to the restaurant.
But planning officers will tomorrow recommend that councillors on the Development Control Committee refuse both planning permission and listed building consent on the grounds that the awning would introduce an “alien feature” and would detract from views along Marine Parade to the Cobb hamlet.
Lyme Town Council had recommended approval with a condition that any water running off the awning would not affect the cafe beneath.
The Lyme Regis Society said that the property had been “well knocked about over the years”.
“The simplicity of the proposed white awnings – without signage - might well be a welcome development, pulling together some of the disparate elements.”
Mr Elmes says that his restaurant had been a success since its opening last year and that he had stayed open through the winter. The covered terrace could enable him to double the number of covers from 24 to 48, when weather was bad.
He said: “It is disappointing that refusal has been recommended. You would have thought in Olympics year that this sort of facility would be valuable. People of the town are for it.”