A NEW ‘family friendly’ restaurant could open in an ‘iconic’ disused shop, with many residents and businesses welcoming the new use for the building.
Former retail site Marmion House in Southsea will be renovated as a cafe or restaurant if councillors grant its premises licence tomorrow.
If approved the venue will open between 9am and 10.30pm from Monday to Saturday and 9am to 10pm on Sunday. Alcohol sales would end half an hour before closing time.
The space, on the corner of Marmion Road and Victoria Road South, was one of four sites owned by furniture store Victoriana but has since closed. Victoriana still operates from a shop halfway down Marmion Road.
In their application owners Jasmine Ryan and Craig Emery said: ‘We will be a very family friendly establishment that will serve food and drink all day from breakfast to lunches to evening meals.
‘We want to create a very casual and relaxed environment suitable for everyone.’
A total of 18 representations were made in favour of the application, with six objections raised.
Granada Road resident Naomi Bowman said: ‘I was so pleased to see the planning application to turn this iconic building in to a restaurant, and would like to provide my full support of this.’
Tony Fitzpatrick, who lives on Stanley Street, added: ‘As a very local resident, I remain concerned that the plight of the high street will one day affect Southsea. I think the restaurant idea in plan is a progressive and enlightened option.’
However, some had concerns. Michael Smith of Victoria Road South said: ‘We are concerned about boisterous behaviour from patrons, on the pavement particularly late at night,’ he said.
‘If this licensing application were permitted, a 10pm curfew would mitigate the impact on local residents.’
Councillor and local resident Judith Smyth agreed. ‘Victoria Road South is not a commercial road, it is a residential street and noise from the premises, especially late at night will be very disturbing for my family and my neighbours – many of us sleep in the front of our houses and will be badly affected by this,’ she said.
The application will be considered at a Portsmouth City Council licensing meeting tomorrow.