Plans for Beacon land to be used by hotel thrown out

The green space in The Beacon which the Manor Hotel wanted to use for outdoor amenity

The green space in The Beacon which the Manor Hotel wanted to use for outdoor amenity - Credit: East Devon District Council

Councillors have chucked out plans to allow a piece of amenity land to be used as outdoor space for a hotel. 

Plans had been put forward by East Devon District Council to use a small area of green space near the Manor Hotel on the Beacon for the siting of tables and chairs. 

The scheme would have provided an external dining area associated with the operation of The Manor Hotel and the application suggested that 12 tables with up to 24 chairs could be accommodated. 

But councillors on East Devon’s planning committee slammed the scheme - for which there was no policy support for in the Local Plan - and said it would ‘ruin the summer’ for local residents, and have a ‘risk to life’ with waiters having to cross the road and walk up the hill to get behind the hotel and the green space. 

Opposing the scheme, local resident Mark Myer said that there was no support for the proposal which was ‘misguided and inappropriate’. 

Recommending refusal, Cllr Olly Davey said: “This is tricky as we are keen to support local businesses and the Manor have no outdoor space, but we have to consider the impact on other people, and in this case, there will be a bit of impact on local residents. 

“There are definitely practical difficulties to this and with people sitting out and eating and drinking, I would have strenuous objections as well if I lived there.” 

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Cllr Joe Whibley added: “I cannot see how it will work with potentially endangering life crossing the road and the distance between the hotel and the area, so none of it makes any sense as to how it will be useful.  

“We do need to promote business in these difficult times, but you cannot override all of the other considerations.” 

Cllr David Key said it was ‘utterly ridiculous’ to think you could get 12 tables and 24 chairs on the undulating piece of land, while Cllr Bruce de Saram said that the British weather could be a problem. 

Councillors unanimously rejected the proposal. 

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