After a break last week, this week we bring you a bumper round-up of the most interesting planning decisions made by Reading Borough Council (RBC) in the last fortnight.

This week’s edition includes plans from the owners of the Purple Turtle, a boundary dispute and a new coffee and ice cream shop.

Purple Turtle to get its own ale – plans approved for eatery and microbrewery

Plans from the owners of the Purple Turtle for a new café or restaurant and microbrewery with a garden have been approved.

The café/restaurant at 10 Gun Street will be next door to the famous bar and music venue and extensions will be made to the ground, first and second floors.

A new microbrewery in the building will supply ale for the Purple Turtle.

READ MORE: Purple Turtle will NOT reopen this weekend in line with government guidance

The freehold of 10 Gun Street was purchased in 2005 from West Berkshire Health Authority by PDR Limited which has three private owners, two of which are also owners of the Purple Turtle.

Previous plans to extend the space nightclub space at the Purple Turtle by building a basement at 10 Gun Street are no longer being considered.

‘Insulting’ four-house plan withdrawn – listed building protected

A controversial application to build four houses on undeveloped land in east Reading has been withdrawn.

A first application at 45 Upper Redlands Road was refused in July 2019, described by one councillor as “civic vandalism” and another as a “tragedy”.

A planning inspector backed the council at appeal last month, highlighting the historical importance of preserving the Redlands Conservation Area and grade II listed building Wantage Hall in her decision to refuse the appeal.

Reading Chronicle:

She also said the scheme would lead to a substantial loss of garden space.

A new application was submitted in November 2019 last year, but this has now been withdrawn after neighbours said there is “little difference” from the now twice-rejected initial application, which neighbours described as “insulting”.

Despite the latest plan claiming to reduce the amount of garden space lost, dozens of neighbours signed a petition opposing the latest plan.

Richard Bennett, Chair of Reading Civic Society, called for the plan to be withdrawn or refused.

Garages to become homes despite neighbours’ concerns

Eight garages in Tilehurst will be demolished and replaced with two semi-detached homes despite concerns raised by neighbours.

The two-bed houses, on land at Dudley Close, will have three parking spaces in total, and some neighbours are not happy about that.

They said residents would suffer from loss of privacy and light, congestion, pollution and one called the design out of character with the surrounding properties.

But the case officer for the council said: “On balance, it is considered that the proposed scheme is acceptable subject to various conditions and informatives, ensuring that no detrimental impact can be caused.”

'Welcome replacement' - six homes plan approved

Neighbours have praised plans to turn two homes and a single-storey warehouse building into six homes, which were approved this week.

The existing two homes on the site – at 49a-51a George Street – will be re-modelled and extended to create four apartments.

Additionally, two flats will be in a single-storey building that will replace the warehouse.

READ MORE: Extension built without permission – council rejects ‘excessive and contrived’ third retrospective application

One neighbour said: “The development of this site is very welcome as it has been in a poor state for some five years or so.

“The plans show a nice design; also the extensions and apartments seems to be of appropriate size and will greatly improve the area without any significant issues affecting neighbours.”

Another said: “I am pleased to see this revised application as it seems to be a very reasonable proposal that will definitely improve the site and will be a welcome replacement for the current dilapidated building in the rear.”

Council says it cannot help with boundary dispute

Planned works have been approved at a home on Oak Tree Road, in Tilehurst, despite a boundary dispute between neighbours.

The neighbour will replace and realign their existing gravel driveway and parking areas to the front and side of the house and will also build a summerhouse in the back garden on land that that is currently has a lawn, hedging and a tree.

A neighbour raised concerns about that new paving, a fence and loss of the hedge on a shared property line will lead to property damage.

But the council said concerns relating to property damage, “while appreciated as important matters”, are outside the scope of the planning system and are instead a civil law matter.

Extension plan rejected

Plans for extensions at a house in the town centre have been rejected by the council.

A partly retrospective application for rear extensions on Mason Street was refused because officers said it would:

  • Significantly reduce the amount of light available to the rear rooms of the neighbouring property
  • Be a significant overdevelopment of the original modest property, which is to the detriment of its appearance and the character of the area

The homeowner will now have to remove the extensions which have already been built.

And one from last week: Coffee and ice cream to replace sports store

A coffee and ice cream chain will be coming to Reading soon.

A certificate of lawfulness application, submitted by 3D Global Ltd, to turn the current sporting goods store Sweatshop into a café, was approved on June 25.

READ MORE: Fast food giant to set up first UK restaurant in Reading since exodus

Bru Coffee and Gelato coffee shop will serve hot drinks, pre-prepared food and gelato at 104-105 Friar Street.

Bru already has cafes in Birmingham, Harrow, Walthamstow and Cardiff.

With cafes now able to open for seated customers from today (June 4), the Reading store will be able to open fully.