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Bars put in another bid for outside tables and chairs
THE owners of two bars in the centre of York are making a second attempt to create an al fresco eating and drinking area for their customers.
Andrew and Sally Dunn, who run Oscars Wine Bar and Bistro and the Biltmore Bar and Grill, want to put tables and chairs outside the two premises, but were turned down by City of York Council last year.
Planning officers said at the time that the scheme would lead to an “unacceptable obstruction” in Swinegate and Back Swinegate, where the bars are located, and could cause safety problems for pedestrians and drivers as well as making it difficult for emergency vehicles to get through the streets.
The Dunns have now submitted a new application for outdoor seating to be brought in outside both their businesses, saying it would be done in similar fashion to those introduced on other streets in the city centre and would freshen up the area, known as The Quarter.
A planning statement by architects Crease Strickland Parkins, the agents for the scheme, said: “The proposal aims to extend the range of amenities available to the public and those suitable for use by families.
“It will improve the appearance of this food and drink operation with the public domain, adding much-needed interest and vitality to the footstreets in this part of the city centre and raising the profile of The Quarter for visitors. In the current economic downturn, properties within The Quarter are vacant, so efforts to increase the viability of the area appear to be particularly important.”
The company said Mr and Mrs Dunn had consulted the police, the fire service, the city centre management team and tourism body Visit York about the possibility of an outdoor drinking and dining zone, and that the seating would not cause blockages for vehicles as Swinegate and Back Swinegate are regarded as pedestrian streets.
They also said the plans would still allow room for people to use the footpaths when they need to get out of the way of vehicles, and that any drivers would be travelling slowly.
A decision on the proposals is expected to be made next month.