Plans to build a new development of homes and a convenience store in place of the former Berrow Inn look set to be rejected by councillors next week.
Sedgemoor District Council’s Development Committee is due to consider the proposals for the site, next to the Berrow Triangle, on Tuesday February 2nd.
Burnham firm Novellus wants to build a new retail unit plus three homes, on the site of the pub, which was demolished in 2014.
Berrow Parish Council has given its support to the scheme, with a spokesman saying: “We recommend approval of this application. The dwellings and retail outlet are of benefit to Berrow and have the support of the majority of parishioners who viewed the plans. The parking for both customers and delivery lorries and the access to the houses at the rear seemed adequate.”
However, Somerset County Council’s Highway Authority has lodged an objection against the plans over traffic concerns.
A spokesman explained: “The proposal is to construct a retail unit and three detached dwellings on the site of a demolished inn, however access to the site to serve a retail unit is difficult, and to serve the three residential units in its present arrangement is unsuitable.”
“The proposed development is likely to result in a conflict between new traffic accessing the site and existing traffic, which would be prejudicial to the safety, amenity and convenience of all highway users given the highway layout at a key junction near to a zebra crossing.”
He added: “The new site access as proposed would be likely to increase the conflict of traffic movements close to an existing junction, resulting in additional hazard and inconvenience to all users.”
“There is no provision for turning on site to avoid vehicles having to reverse out onto Berrow Road at the B3140 junction. Servicing of the retail unit is problematic given the lack of space on site with customer parking, as well as exiting.”
Sedgemoor’s Economic Development Team has given its support to the plans, welcoming the proposals for a new retail unit, which it says would create new jobs and be in line with the council’s Economic Development Strategy.
In a report to councillors, Sedgemoor’s case officer Stuart Houlet recommends that district councillors refuse the plans at next week’s meeting.
He writes: “The proposed development would result in a conflict between new traffic accessing the site and existing traffic given the highway layout at a key junction near to a zebra crossing; create a new site access likely to increase the conflict of traffic movements close to an existing junction; and make inadequate provision for turning on site to avoid vehicles having to reverse out onto Berrow Road at the B3140 junction.”
He adds that the plans may “give rise to problems servicing the retail unit given the lack of space on site with customer parking, as well as exiting given the private road immediately adjacent and would prejudice the amenity and convenience of highway users, giving rise to conflict and additional hazard.”