Council in a spin over casino plans - Tuesday 12th of July 2005

EVESHAM Town Council have objected to the proposed plans for the re-development of the Regal Cinema in Bengeworth.

Views at the meeting of the Town Council last Monday were very mixed but when put to a vote, the plans did not receive enough support to get the Councils backing.

The application was objected to on the grounds that the rooftop apartments would overlook properties mainly on Burford Road and the numerous and diverse number of uses of the building.

The plans for the Regal Cinema, in Port Street are extensive, with a large number of differing activities planned.

Apartments

These include two more cinema screens to add to the one already there, also planned is a casino, night-club, retail area, restaurant, bar, takeaway, performance area and five roof top apartments.

The cinema has been closed since 2002 and what to do with it has been a problem for some time. Some of the councillors at the meeting believed that the plans seemed like a good idea.

Cllr Carolyn Whitmore said: "Evesham needs something like this in the area, the plans maybe need some changes here and there but I do like the idea of regenerating the Regal in this way."

Other councillors present agreed with these sentiments and thought that the plans would breath new life into Port Street and were good for Evesham as a whole.

But there was also plenty of opposition to the plans, mainly regarding noise levels, the size of the building and how ambitious the scheme was. These views proved crucial as the vote showed.

Cllr Tony Lyon said: "I do believe this will bring business to the area but at the wrong time of day.

"I have spoken to residents who live near the proposed site and they are worried about noise levels in the night, and the loss of privacy from the imposing building."

These views were backed up by Cllr Alan Booth who believed the plans to be very ambitious, and he could not see how the many differing activities would be fitted in to the building.

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