North Shields petrol station plans approved despite over 100 objections

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Proposals to demolish and redevelop a North Shields pub have been approved despite local fears over dangerous traffic and crime.

The former Redburn pub, on Wallsend Road, has been approved for demolition so it can be replaced with a new petrol station.

The plans have angered locals and prompted 104 objections on North Tyneside Council’s online planning portal, with many fearing the filling station would create traffic chaos and fuel anti-social behaviour.

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Councillors Hannah Johnson and Matthew Thirlaway stated the plans were so serious they should be decided by the planning committee and not by council officers.

The Redburn pub, on Waterville Road, circa 2017. Picture: Newcastle ChronicleThe Redburn pub, on Waterville Road, circa 2017. Picture: Newcastle Chronicle
The Redburn pub, on Waterville Road, circa 2017. Picture: Newcastle Chronicle

Chirton councillor Rebecca O’Keefe had previously submitted her objections to the plans in writing to the council’s planning committee but also attended in person to voice her concerns.

She told the planning committee the area was already blighted by traffic from the Tyne Tunnel and nearby housing developments would only further contest the roads, rendering the plans problematic. She also cautioned the 24-hour business could invite anti-social behaviour.

“In my opinion, I think this new development will attract more anti-social behaviour,” she said. “The safety of the local community and residents has not been taken into consideration.

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"Chirton is one of the most deprived in the country and the most deprived in the borough with deprivation comes health, social, and economic inequalities which will not be helped by a 24-hour petrol station.”

In a council report, highway officers concluded a new petrol station would not create “capacity issues” either within the site or the wider area.

Northumbria Police stated that petrol stations tend to be “crime attractors rather than crime generators”. In light of this, police recommended the station staff security, have security equipment in place, and keep alcohol, if it is permitted a licence, close to the till.

The applicant, Mr Ali Rezaei, also stated the petrol station would close access to the shop in the evening, to prevent upsetting behaviour and thefts, so customers could only be served via a hatch. Mr Rezaei also disputed that a site would generate an equal amount or more anti-social behaviour than its previous use as a pub.

In addition, documents submitted to the council claimed the development could generate five full-time jobs. The planning committee voted unanimously to approve the application.

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