The Domino Pizza Group has failed to secure permission for a hot food take-away in a Buckinghamshire shopping centre after an inspector concluded that the use would be harmful to the area's vitality and viability.
Local planning policy allowed for uses that would complement retail uses and attract people to the centre by providing services direct to a large number of people. Within the part of the frontage containing the appeal premises, the policy stipulated that the proportion of non-retail uses should not exceed 50 per cent and should not dominate the frontage. However, the 50 per cent criterion would not apply in respect of class A3 food and drink uses, the inspector noted.
She found that the proposal would not attract people to the centre, in accordance with local plan policy, as most business would result from telephone orders for home delivery of pizzas. She also noted that most transactions would be conducted in the evenings, when the majority of other outlets in the road would be closed.
She observed that the proposed use would be sited next to three existing A3 uses. She held that such a concentration would lead to a division in the street that would result in a less viable shopping area because less people would be attracted to it. Consequently, she concluded that the proposed change of use would have a harmful effect on the vitality and viability of the shopping frontage, contrary to the aims of the local plan.
DCS No: 31954923; Inspector: Gloria McFarlane; Hearing.