Council leader concerned over number of cafes in Gosport High Street

Councillor Mark Hook at Gosport shopping precinct.
Councillor Mark Hook at Gosport shopping precinct.
Owner Andrew Gadsden
Picture: Ian Hargreaves (133316-1)

Much-loved Portsmouth tea merchant set to close and make way for student flats

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The leader of Gosport Borough Council has expressed concerns over the number of cafes in the High Street.

Councillor Mark Hook says it is near the 33 per cent maximum set by the council for the number of similar units.

It comes as plans have been submitted to turn the former Rosebys store into a coffee shop or cafe.

Cllr Hook told The News: ‘My concern is that we are reaching the maximum of cafes in the High Street.

‘I’m a great believer in competition.

‘But we need to see more retail stores in the area.

‘We need a good choice of both retail and cafes.’

Recently national chain, Coffee#1, was given permission to turn the former Yachtsman pub into a cafe.

Cafe owner Marten Holdway, who owns TK Snax based at the bus station, is unhappy with the plans.

He said: ‘It’s ridiculous to be honest.

‘There are already way too many coffee and cafe stores in the High Street and now we have another.

‘A coffee shop at the end of the street is set to be opened.

‘I’m not happy with this at all.’

Leader of the Liberal Democrats in Gosport, Peter Chegwyn believes cafes on the High Street are becoming a problem

He said: ‘It’s always a shame when we use a retail store.

‘Obviously it’s always better to have units in use.

‘But we are losing High Street stores and becoming full of cafe and coffee shops.

‘In order for it to thrive we need a healthy mix of both retail and coffee shops.’

The agent for the site, PLC Architects, did not comment on who may be taking over the vacant shop.