DCSIMG

‘Public say’ call halts sauna bid

The Honeycombe sauna in Egerton Road Blackpool and (right) Coun David Owen who said it was likely to be approved.

The Honeycombe sauna in Egerton Road Blackpool and (right) Coun David Owen who said it was likely to be approved.

  • by Gareth Vickers
 

NEIGHBOURS are being given chance to have their say on the opening hours of a controversial sauna in Blackpool.

Blackpool Council’s planning committee was expected to pass the application for an extension to the opening hours of The Honeycombe on Egerton Road, North Shore, yesterday.

But, during the meeting, Coun Ivan Taylor, ward councillor for Claremont, which includes Egerton Road, spoke out against the proposal, alleging the Honeycombe had been open until 3am on Saturday and had therefore breached planning laws – an allegation Honeycombe owner Chris Maher strongly denied.

The Honeycombe, a popular venue for gay men, previously lost bids for a late night drinks 
licence and for planning permission to extend its opening hours to 3am.

The venue currently operates daily until 8pm but a revised application sought permission to open until 11pm on weekdays and midnight on Fridays and Saturdays.

The decision was yesterday deferred by the planning committee until December 5, the end of a public notification period.

Coun David Owen, chairman of the planning committee, said: “If there is no contrary opinion we will look to approve it on December 5.

“The application will be deferred for the notification period to elapse for neighbours in the area to make representations.

“If nothing comes in then it’s likely to be approved.”

Coun Taylor added: “The building was originally given planning permission as a daytime operation and that’s what I think it should remain.

“Later opening hours are just not compatible with this area where many young families live.”

Honeycombe’s owner Chris Maher felt the decision was a step in the right direction.

He said: “I feel this is a positive step forwards for the Honeycombe.

“Obviously we must wait until December 5, but it looks like encouraging news.”

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