Costa Coffee opened up their coffee shop in Rayleigh High Street without getting planning permission for a change of use from ‘retail’ to’mixed use’ . So they are applying now, retrospectively.
Officers are recommending approval. As councillors we will of course judge this on its planning merits. However we’d be interested in your comments on the effect this sort of cafe will have on High Street trade.
Is the loss of any retail premises a bad thing, and to be opposed?
Or if people are going out to buy, say, shower gel, will this encourage them to have a latte and then buy their shower gel from Boots or Superdrug, rather than go out-of-town to a supermarket?