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EG Group has received another knock-back from planners in Bournemouth at a site where it is attempting to upgrade and expand facilities.

An application for a knock-down rebuild at Bath Road has been refused and this follows a previous redevelopment scheme which was turned down by the planning authority in March 2019 and subsequently dismissed at appeal in October of that year.

A report by a council planning officer on the latest proposal stated: “The applicant has sought permission for the ‘Erection of a replacement Petrol Filling Station (PFS) and linked kiosk store’.

“However, the local planning authority (LPA) is not satisfied with the description of development as an accurate reflection of what is being proposed. This is because the ancillary store is set to undergo a 500% increase in space, at the same time as the number of petrol pumps reduce from 10 to just 6, with deficient parking spaces provided relative to the increased retail floorspace, meaning shoppers will likely block pumps and further reduce the PFS function.”

The planner explained: “Plans propose a building almost 4 times as big as the existing (twice as long and twice as deep). The retail area is growing from 37sqm to 187sqm (and back of house from to 16sqm to 57sqm). The previous case dismissed at appeal proposed a much smaller extension to the existing building.

“Simultaneous to the proposed enlargement, plans propose a reduction in the number of petrol pumps from 10 (5 double sided) to 6 (2 double sided and 2 single sided). The previous case proposed 8 double sided. Having regard for paragraph 11 of the PINS decision, the applicant previously argued that a reduction to 8 pumps and a smaller retail shop than proposed were sufficiently viable.

“If the site is needed as a PFS, it is not clear why such a significant portion of the site is being given increasingly to food retail and associated parking, in a layout that will further inhibit the operation of the PFS function.”

They concluded: “If in fact the fuel sales are to become ancillary to the retail sales within the convenience shop … then a change of use is being proposed and the description must reflect that. This matter may have to be resolved at appeal as the applicant is unwilling to amend the description.”

The planner also cited the impact on a neighbouring conservation area and highway safety concerns as grounds for refusal.