Montagues set to open second restaurant in South Shore

The site of a proposed new restaurant in South Shore
The site of a proposed new restaurant in South Shore
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An empty shop looks set to switch from acupuncture to appetisers after plans to convert it to a restaurant were approved.

The scheme will see a single storey rear extension built onto the former Acupuncture and Herb Medicine store on Squires Gate Lane, close to the junction with Clifton Drive in Blackpool.

Restaurateurs who already run Montagues on Highfield Road, South Shore, have been granted permission by the council to extend the premises which has not traded for some time.

They say they hope to "offer a new dining experience and create around eight new jobs."

A design statement accompanying the planning application says: "We are dynamic, independent restaurateurs with a track record in developing successful ventures here in Blackpool.

"Central to our ethos is to bring great dining experiences to the people of Blackpool through the creation of great spaces, quality food and our commitment to the development of all our employees."

Town hall planners, who approved the project using their delegated powers, said it was "recognised there is something of an over-concentration of restaurant and take-away uses in this local centre".

But they added the unit had been empty for some time and there was an existing convenience store to meet the day-to-day requirements of nearby residents.

Concerns were raised by one resident who warned there was not enough parking in the area, and that a proposed outdoor seating area might attract anti-social behaviour.

However planners concluded there was not enough pressure on parking to refuse the application and proposed a condition allowing the use of the outdoor area only until 8pm.

In making their decision, they said: "Economically, the use would be appropriate in the local centre and would help to maintain its vitality and viability."