Saffron Walden could welcome another Costa as another bid for former Beales site is submitted

PUBLISHED: 15:44 19 July 2017

Costa has submitted an application to move into a unit which used to house Beales, in Saffron Walden. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Costa has submitted an application to move into a unit which used to house Beales, in Saffron Walden. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Archant

Another branch of Costa could be coming to Saffron Walden after a planning application was submitted to Uttlesford District Council last month.

The application follows the closure of Beales, in Market Place, in January 2017, which has since been split into three separate units.

Costa has applied to occupy one of the units, with health food chain, Holland and Barrett, also having submitted its own application, while the remaining unit lays empty.

As part of its plans, Costa hopes to make use of 1184sq ft of space with a counter at the entrance before a spacious seating layout to the left.

A staff area is planned for the back of the unit with delivery access, as well as toilets on the same floor.

Costa already has a store in Saffron Walden, in King Street – a stone’s throw from the proposed store – but it is unclear whether this will close or co-exist with the new outlet.

Following the announcement that the Beales department store was shutting down, concerns were raised over how long the site would stay empty.

Speaking last year, Wendy Howell, Saffron Walden Town Team member and Design Essentials owner, said: “The Town Team’s view is that we just want it filled.

“We want it to be taken over relatively quickly, as Saffron Walden is such a lovely place to visit at the moment.”

She also said she would like to see a restaurant, such as Jamie Oliver’s chain or Bill’s, take over, and, with the remaining unit still empty, this could still happen.

The application for Costa to move in has not gone before the council’s planning committee yet, but Saffron Walden Town Council says it would like conditions to be put in place if it does go ahead.

In a document on the district council’s website, the town council said: “The committee noted the plans and asked for planning conditions to be put in place restricting deliveries to certain days so they do not take place on Tuesdays and Saturdays when the market is on and the road closure to the Market Square is in force during peak delivery times.

“It was also felt that deliveries via Emson Close would be difficult due to the amount of cars and lack of space available along the road.”

To view the plans, visit uttlesford.gov.uk.

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