Major waste disposal concerns were raised in the Sedgemoor District Council’s decision to convert the former hairdressers’ section at West Quay, Bridgwater town centre.
The council conducted a virtual meeting on November 10, Tuesday, to discuss the plans of converting the empty unit beside the Fountain Inn into a takeaway fried chicken store, as suggested by resident M. Raja.
The decision made on the plans was recently deferred until December so that more essential details concerning the disposal of waste products will be finalized.
Brian Smedley, one of the councillors, argued that the chicken takeaway store would exacerbate the existing antisocial behaviour problems in the location. He added that the store’s late-night opening would only disturb the tranquil place of West Quay residents. Most of them work early morning shifts and need a quiet night’s sleep. He also added that the takeaway food business would be out of place in the territory.
Most of the councillors also questioned the waste the site would generate and how they will be safely stored before proper collection and prompt disposal.
Councillor Mike Murphy also added that the 45 metres long distance to the location of the refuse from the unit is not appropriate. The oil-based refuse and the cooking oil needed to be properly discarded.
Other councillors questioned that there is no safe fire exit located at the rear end of the place, endangering the employees’ and clients’ lives in case of fire.
Councillor Liz Scott also added that there is only one existing fire exit, which is unsafe for both the employees and customers. Their safety is still the priority.
Liam Evans, the planning officer, suggested the existing exit door requires additional fire-proof materials sufficient for the needs of the said premises.
He also added that there are visible garbage bins in the premises for the new takeaway food business and adequate space for proper storage of waste products before these are collected.
The committee members have voted to postpone a decision on the proposed plans by at least one 1 month by thirteen votes to one (one councillor was absent due to technical concerns).