Chichester's newest independent business given the green light

A well-supported application for an independent micropub to replace a vacant vintage clothing shop in Chichester has been given the green light.

The approved application (19/01192/FUL) requested the change of use of 9 Crane Street from a retail unit to a drinking establishment, which would be named The Escapist.

Crane Street, Chichester. Photo: Google Street View

Crane Street, Chichester. Photo: Google Street View

The micropub will move into the site previously used by the One Legged Jockey, which closed in December 2017. The applicant, Thomas Owen, said the aim is to 'change the underutilised retail space into a small welcoming independent micropub'. Read more here

In its decision notice, Chichester District Council said the micropub must not be open to the public outside the hours of 12pm and 10.30pm, 'unless otherwise agreed in writing by the Local Planning Authority', to 'safeguard the amenities of neighbouring properties'.

The application received 14 letters and comments of support and just four objections, albeit one of those was made by Chichester City Council.

Citing its reason for the objection, the city council wrote: "Non-retail uses in the city centre already exceed the 25 per cent threshold and further non-retail changes of use would harm the viability and vitality of the city centre contrary to Policy 27 of the Local Plan."

In response, John-Henry Bowden, district councillor for Chichester West, called in the application for a planning committee decision (red card procedure).

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