'Pavement cafe' bid for seaside Wetherspoon pub

The Troll Cart on Regent Road in Yarmouth.

The Troll Cart in Regent Road has added to its outdoor seating during the pandemic and now wants to make the arrangement semi-permanent. - Credit: James Weeds

A proposal for 13 picnic benches enclosed by glazed screens has been launched by a seaside pub.

The Troll Cart in Regent Road, Great Yarmouth, is asking planners if it can put the benches along its Temple Road frontage, where temporary seating has sprung up during the pandemic to cater for outdoor hospitality.

Eating and drinking outside was at first a necessity under lockdown rules, with pavement seating springing up all over, and may now be a choice among some customers.

According to drawings submitted in support of the plan  making the outside seating area semi-permanent would see seven benches to the left of the main entrance, and six in two rows of three to the right enclosed by glazed screens.

A brochure included among the papers says installing screens can make al-fresco drinking and eating a virtually year-round option, raise awareness of the venue, and contain the activity on the pavement.

The pub said it  had operated a pavement café since 2006 and that the area was extended earlier this year to allow for 13 picnic benches granted under legislation introduced to support the re-opening of hospitality. 

The legislation, however, only allows for temporary structures and would not support permission for the fixed glazed barriers being sought, hence the planning application.

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Wetherspoon spokesman Eddie Gershon said: We are incredibly grateful to the councillors of Great Yarmouth who have allowed us to create an external area to the front of the pub adjacent to the bus station.

"Due to incredibly positive feedback from our customers we are hoping to make this a long term feature and, subject to approval from all relevant parties we aim to install fixed surrounding barriers to enclose the area and enhance its appearance. “

People have until July 14 to have their say.

To view the plans visit the borough council's planning portal.