Outcry over fish and chip shop plan for Market Cross News store in Beverley
A PLAN to convert the only independent newsagents in Beverley's historic town centre into a fish and chip shop has prompted a deluge of objections.
The lease on Market Cross News in Saturday Market is up for sale as boss Nigel Holmes hopes to retire.
With restaurants dominating the historic East Riding capital, an application has been submitted to turn the site into a chip shop.
But neighbouring businesses and organisations representing various interest groups in Beverley have been quick to lodge their objections.
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Barbara English, of Beverley and District Civic Society, wrote: "The Market Cross News shop is at the centre of Beverley's Saturday Market on the site where, in the Middle Ages, the archbishop's house used to stand, and later the town's Guildhall.
"For hundreds of years this particular location, close to the grade one listed building, the Market Cross, has been symbolic of Beverley, seen in countless drawings, paintings, photographs and films.
"It is too significant to be lightly changed into the least attractive of all neighbours.
"A similar application for 18 Saturday Market was rejected on appeal and a fish and chip shop van had its licence revoked because of the litter."
Guest and Philips jewellers, which is next door to Market Cross News, has also filed an objection.
It states: "A takeout food shop would cause a great increase in the amount of rubbish on the pavements outside our property, especially food wrapping from fish and chips dropped and trodden into the pavement. The premises will attract drinkers from the town centre public houses eating on the pavements and causing a nuisance.
"The area in question is at the centre of the Beverley Conservation Area and most of the properties are listed.
"A takeaway food outlet would detract from the character and tourist and retail appeal of this historic area in front of the Market Cross, which is the focal point of the town and relatively close to the very fine St Mary's Church.
"There will be an increased volume of traffic, caused by people dropping by to collect food and waiting on the kerb-side and by the Market Cross due to the parking bays being fully occupied at most times of the day and night."
The proposal comes amid concerns the northern half of Beverley is losing retail footfall in the daytime.
In its response, Beverley Renaissance Partnership Business Group, writes that approving the plan would mean a further loss of retail space in Saturday Market.
The application is submitted by Harpers, which runs fish and chip shops across Yorkshire. The nearest branches are in Brandesburton, Market Weighton and Wetwang.
No date has yet been set for the application to be heard.
Nigel Holmes, who runs the attached art gallery as well as the newsagent, plans to retire. He said he had enjoyed his time in the shop and many of the customers had become friends.
To view the application, visit www.eastriding.gov.uk/public accessdocuments/default.aspx ?folder1_ref=12/02327/PLF