Concerns of congestion, litter and noise have been raised over plans for a new farm shop, with residents 'strongly' objecting to it writes Lottie Welch.

A change of use application has been lodged with Dorset Council to turn the building next to HiQ Tyres and Autocare on East Road into a farm shop and takeaway.

The applicant said: “We wish to open a small farm shop selling local produce and quality takeaway coffee with hot and cold food to match - an extension of our bakery, based in Symondsbury, that serves our two restaurants, Swim in Lyme Regis and Rise in West Bay.”

It is proposed the farm shop will create two full time and six part time staff positions and be open from 7am to 11pm.

However, residents who live close-by are objecting to the plans.

Alan Gumbley, who lives less than 100 yards from the proposed shop, commented on the application: “We already suffer the noise day and night caused by customers and deliveries to the Esso garage and Spar shop.

“We constantly have to pick up plastic bags, plastic gloves plus food and drink cartons carelessly discarded by customers from the garage area.

“These are health hazards and a constant eyesore to this area. This new development would only make matters worse.

“One such establishment in the immediate vicinity is more than enough. We do not need another one a few yards away.

“We urge you [Dorset Council] to refuse this application to preserve what little peace and quiet we have left.”

Michael Sadler commented that he and his wife objected to the application ‘most strongly’ due to noise, traffic, anti-social behaviour, littering, light pollution, odours and early morning and late-night deliveries.

“We already have a petrol station opening 24 hours, this attracts people very late at night,” he said.

“We already suffer sleepless nights due to car doors slamming, people chatting and light pollution. The litter would add to the litter we have daily from the petrol station.

“We have lived here for 30 years and have never had so much concern since the petrol station was granted 24-hour opening and an alcohol licence. A takeaway outlet would only make things worse.”

Members of Bridport Town Council’s planning committee had no objection to the plans, subject to there being no adverse comments from Highways England and appropriate extraction arrangements for catering.

Cllr Sarah Williams supported the plans and said: "It's bringing a disused building into use."

Cllr Dave Rickard said he was concerned it will increase the traffic in the area and: "it quite often causes congestion when something is trying to turn."

"Where it does cause congestion is when something is on the A35, it comes round the roundabout and wants to pull in to the petrol station - now we're going to have another reason to pull in - and it blocks the whole roundabout. You get traffic backed up on East Road, Sea Road South and Sea Road North. Sometimes it is really bad."

However, Highways England recommends Dorset Council do not grant approval for three months in order for the applicant to submit information on ‘potential trip generation’ resulting from the change of use, an assessment on the suitability of the road to cope with more cars turning into the garage and a survey on parking for both the shop and HiQ.

In comments submitted by Highways England, a spokesman said: “Additional traffic is likely to increase the potential for queues to form on the A35 behind right turning vehicles, which could extend back and block the roundabout, increasing congestion and impacting on road safety.”

Bothenhampton and Walditch Parish Council has objected on the grounds of ‘slow moving traffic, traffic congestion and delays to traffic flowing into the town along the A35’.

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