Time called on Blackpool's seafront Terrace Bar as plans refused

The operators of a seafront bar in Blackpool face having to close the venue after councillors threw out a planning application for the site next to Central Pier.
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The Terrace Bar on the Promenade opened four years ago but it emerged last year it did not have planning permission.

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Blackpool's seafront Terrace Bar saved from closure - for now at least

A retrospective planning application was refused by the council’s planning committee at its meeting on Tuesday (October 11) after members were told the bar represented “poor quality, piecemeal development on the western side of the tram tracks.”

The Terrace Bar next to Central PierThe Terrace Bar next to Central Pier
The Terrace Bar next to Central Pier
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Susan Parker, head of development management at the council, added the bar was detrimental to its setting next to the historic pier.

She said town hall planners had worked with the applicant to offer temporary planning permission for three years after the application was deferred by the planning committee in August last year.

This would help fund work which was needed on Central Pier which was damaged in a fire in 2020.

But no agreement had been reached and so the recommendation was for refusal.

The Terrace Bar next to Central PierThe Terrace Bar next to Central Pier
The Terrace Bar next to Central Pier
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Mark Marshall, representing the Blackpool Pier Company, said the Terrace Bar was a vital source of revenue for all three piers owned by the company.

He said:: “We are doing our best in terms of budgeting and professionalising the maintenance and repairs system.

“But it does take time and for that reason we felt that three years just wouldn’t assist us in any shape or form.

“To take this income stream away from the pier, which represents about 7.5 per cent of the gross turnover per year, is a big hit.

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“Taking that sort of money away from a company that is beginning to get back on its feet will only lead to delays in the repair structure.”

The application sought retrospective permission for development which is already in place including four structures housing a bar, storage and toilets, a canopy over the seating area near the bar and a smaller canopy over the stage.

But in their report, planning officers described the site as “cluttered” while the addition of canopies was “incongruous”.

The report says: “The application site is in a particularly prominent and highly visible location on the Promenade and is in close proximity to valuable heritage assets.”

The applicant has the right to appeal the decision.