RESIDENTS protesting against a take-away opening in Roffey were defeated in a last ditch attempt to stall a planning application on Tuesday.
Plans for 80 Lambs Farm Road to change from a retail unit to a hot food outlet have been discussed repeatedly by Horsham District Council development management committee over the past few months.
Members of the Residents Against the Take-away (RATT) group expressed their anger at last month’s meeting when councillors agreed to delegate the plans with view to approval, providing certain conditions were met.
One of the conditions was for an end user to be in place, so the type of takeaway would be known.
On Tuesday committee members heard the applicant, John Relleen, had told officers that he did not know who the end user would be and it would be difficult to market the unit without planning permission in place.
He had agreed to upgrade the extractor fan to meet national requirements for any type of take-away, but with the application back before the committee, the RATT group saw it as an opportunity to prevent the plans going through.
RATT’s Les Daniels said the group’s expert with 42 years of experience in pollution control did not believe the fan would efficiently control the odour.
Local members Helena Croft (Con, Roffey North) and Liberal Democrat David Skipp said they were not in favour of the plans, but Mr Skipp added there were no planning grounds for refusal.
Frances Haigh (LDem, Horsham Park) put forward a motion for the plans to be refused because it conflicted with the Localism Act.
However officers made it clear it would be difficult to defend such a decision on appeal and although the RATT group’s expert disagreed, the fan had been assessed and met Government standards.
There was a majority vote against the motion to refuse the application.