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Gloucestershire Business News

Civic Society objects to 131 Promenade appeal

Cheltenham Civic Society has made an objection to the planning appeal to retain temporary structures at 131 Promenade.

Lucky Onion is appealing against Cheltenham Borough Council's decision to refuse planning and listed building consent for the temporary structures outside the popular bar at 125-133 Promenade.

The structures were introduced during the pandemic, when Cheltenham Borough Council allowed temporary structures outside hospitality venues in the town without the need for planning permission, to help boost footfall and capacity.

In October 2022, the council told Lucky Onion, owned by Superdry founder and CEO Julian Dunkerton, that the structures had to go, but it appealed against the decision and they are still in place. 

Now the Civic Society has put its views forward to Cheltenham Borough Council.

Andrew Booton, Civic Society chair, said: "This sea of tents ought to have been taken down long ago.

"Our objection to Lucky Onion's appeal is that most of the buildings around Imperial Square are listed, with 125-133, in particular, forming one of Cheltenham's most attractive settings and enjoying Grade II* status.

"It is impossible to see how the mass of tents preserves or enhances the character of Imperial Square, which is within the Montpellier Character Area of the Central Conservation Area. It is equally impossible to see how these structures preserve or enhance the buildings they sit in front of, since they obscure most of the special architectural features."

Punchline said: "While we respect the Civic Society and everything it does for the town, on this occasion we can't agree. The society isn't being realistic about the current business situation in the county.

"Julian Dunkerton has done a fantastic job in bringing footfall and money into the town during a difficult few years for business. To take away a big part of 131 Promenade would be doing Cheltenham's economy a huge disservice."

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