New design for Hooked on the Rocks restaurant in Falmouth Swanpool

A seaside restaurant in Falmouth has launched a second attempt at major works, including a replacement building and a new apartment.

Hooked on the Rocks in Swanpool was refused permission by Cornwall Council in August last year for the same project after the planning committee said it felt the modern design of the new building would not match not to the local area.

Now the restaurant has submitted new plans, again to demolish the existing one-storey restaurant and replace it with a two-story building to include a new restaurant and apartment, but with what it describes as ” a better contribution to the character of the region.”

BW Planning submitted documents in conjunction with Owen + Co for Pentagon Facilities Ltd, the claimant.

In them they stated: “This planning application is intended to overcome the ground for refusal, with a more appropriate addition to the street scene and a better contribution to the character of the area.”

Referring to the previous planning refusal, they say: ‘This has prompted an overhaul, which has been guided by informal conversations with a planning officer and pre-application discussion with members of Falmouth City Council’s planning committee. in November 2021.

“It appeared that the architectural concept of a contemporary, flat-roofed ‘box’ was dividing local opinion, hence the resistance to [previous application] PA21/11112.

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“Therefore, the use of a hipped roof, in keeping with the neighboring ‘Plymtot’ dwelling, is seen as an important step towards achieving an acceptable balance between traditional and contemporary architecture in this coastal location. leading.”

The proposed new building would include a restaurant in the basement and on the ground floor, as well as the kitchen and an outdoor seating terrace, with a toilet, cellar and storage leading from the car park to the floor at the restaurant, and a two-bedroom apartment on the first floor.

“[In] the proposed site plan, the footprint of the new building shifts north by approximately 2m, preserving the storage area between the restaurant and neighboring Plymtot, but also creating a space wide enough to park a car, outside use either by a member of the restaurant staff or the occupants of the residential apartment.

“At the north end of the site, off-street parking for approximately two vehicles is being achieved with a permeable gravel parking area,” the planners add.

Explaining the reason for the redevelopment, they say: “The owners of the existing business explain that one of the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic has been a reduction in revenue. This has amplified the need to redevelop the site and make the catering business fit for the future, combining more efficient use of space in a building with lower operating costs.

The proposed new design for the restaurant Photo: Owen & Co/Cornwall Council

“The less energy it takes to heat the building, the better. Owners expect to take advantage of lower costs and boosted turnover to allow them to retain more staff and have a less seasonal business model, with an aspiration to meet customer demand throughout the year.

“Additional personal protective equipment (PPE) and cleaning supplies have become a necessity for many businesses, but this requires storage space, and the existing restaurant site layout no longer provides sufficient storage space. Small office/administration space will allow owners to operate a more efficient reservations system and improve their record keeping, making it easier to meet data protection requirements.

“A first-floor residential apartment could diversify the income stream of the existing catering site, whether it is rental income from a long-term rental or holiday occupancy income.

“A seasonal variation in restaurant revenue could be mitigated by a steady flow of revenue from the apartment, helping the applicant recover the capital cost of the redevelopment project while meeting some of the costs associated with operating it. of the lower part of the building proposed as a restaurant.The community would benefit either from the housing tax or from the professional rate, depending on the occupation of the apartment.

And they add that for many hotel companies, 2020 and 2021 have been tough years, with “economic uncertainty” continuing into 2022.

“Therefore, the need to make the best use of land and assets and to have a building that helps a business grow and sustain is more evident than ever.

“The owners of Hooked on the Rocks recognize their responsibilities as a local employer and strive to create an asset to attract and retain new employees as well as new customers. A new home for an established local business of long overdue is considered long overdue,” the planners conclude.

Full plans can be viewed at Cornwall Council website PA22/02939where comments can be left as part of the public consultation.


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Rozella J. Cook