Betting shop turned down to preserve retail mix

The change of use of a souvenir shop in central London to a betting shop has been turned down on the grounds that it would harm the retail function of the area.

Given a proliferation of restaurants and cafes in the area, the appellant argued that the road should be allowed to become a leisure destination. The betting shop would enhance the area's commercial viability and its character would deteriorate if an inflexible policy were applied, he asserted.

The inspector considered that a lively mixture of ground-floor retail and commercial uses with office and residential space above was the essence of the area's character and function. In his view, the remaining shops played a very important part in maintaining the area's vitality and its role in providing services to residents, workers and businesses.

Inspector: Nicholas Taylor; Written representations


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