A new place to have a pint in Amble has been granted planning permission, but the venue still requires a licence before it can operate.
A bid to convert the Friendliest Port’s former tourist information centre (TIC) into a micropub was unanimously approved at last Thursday’s (January 24) meeting of the North Northumberland Local Area Council.
The building on Queen Street, by the Town Square, which also houses public toilets, has been out of action since June 2017, with the county council looking to find another user.
At the committee’s October meeting, plans to transform the shuttered TIC into a shop were given the go-ahead, but around the same time, applicant Jake Castleman lodged a scheme for a micropub in the premises, for which he has signed a 15-year lease.
Nearby resident Guy Nutting raised concerns about the impact on neighbours through noise and other disturbance, but following questions of the planners, it was explained that a number of the issues – such as live music – were licensing rather than planning matters.
Nonetheless, the approval does include a condition limiting the hours of operation to the following: Monday to Friday, 5pm to 11pm; Saturday, 12pm to 11pm; Sundays/bank holidays, 12pm to 10.30pm.
But the meeting heard that the applicant may not seek to operate to these hours and the details of this will be dealt with via the alcohol licence.
Following a detailed discussion, Coun Gordon Castle moved approval, saying: “What we are deciding here is the change of use in principle.”
Amble member, Coun Terry Clark, added: “It’s a perfect location for a micropub, as long as they control the noise.”
The application explains that The Cock & Bull, described as a cheese and ale house, would be owned and run by personal licence holder and experienced pub manager, Mr Castleman.
He said: “I want to create my ideal pub. Something that I would love to visit myself.”
The report to members states that the public toilets are to remain in place and operational, which was the only area of concern for Amble Town Council.
Ben O'Connell, Local Democracy Reporting Service