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Photo by Cllr Karl Love

A passionate community who lodged more than 900 objections against a controversial planning application relating to the site of the Lifeboat View Café in Bembridge are celebrating, as the plans have now been withdrawn.

Residents in the village of Bembridge have been up in arms over a proposal to place a takeaway food van and kiosk on the site of the former thriving Lifeboat View Cafe at Lane End.

Originally, the seafront location next to Bembridge lifeboat station was home to 3 flats and a café but in September last year the popular establishment was demolished to make way for a smaller replacement. The Isle of Wight Council approved the demolition and building works to allow for an extension to the building that housed the 3 flats – now converted into 1 house – and the building of a new café.

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However, earlier this year property owner Debbie Potts put in a separate planning application to change the plans somewhat. Under proposals submitted to the Council in February, Mrs Potts sought to extend her house further and build a boathouse on the site. She also put in an application to run a takeaway food van alongside a small kiosk. It’s these proposals that led to the massive response from the local community as they feared they would lose their local café for good.

Both residents and tourists alike have expressed their anger at the situation and have emphasised the importance of a café in the location for tourism offering and employment opportunities.

Now, following the negative response to the plans, the applications submitted to the Council have been withdrawn.

Councillor Michael Murwill has this week said:

“I received an e-mail yesterday from the planning agent, Paul Stack, confirming the withdrawal of the application.

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“The e-mail states the owner is now hoping to implement the approval for the replacement café as approved under previous application”.

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