The Southend store renews its coffee offer

The bosses of a convenience store in Southend have launched a new bid to open a tearoom and cafe to serve residents visiting Southchurch Park.

The owners of the One Stop store on the corner of Shaftesbury Avenue and Liftan Way had their plans rejected in 2020 due to the store being too far from the city centre.

However, new plans have now been submitted, with the owner hoping to make the most of Southchurch Park’s growing popularity after its car park was redone last year and expanded to 218 spaces.

In a new planning application to Southend Council, architects APS Design Associates said: ‘It is well known that Southchurch Park, particularly in autumn and summer, is very popular and is currently only served by a small run cafe by the council.

‘The nearest refreshment facilities other than the Park Cafe would be along the seafront on the Eastern Esplanade and so we believe there is room for another light refreshment facility. , especially given its proximity to Southchurch Park and Eastern Esplanade Beach. .”

The cafe aims to sell tea and coffee and provide light refreshments such as sandwiches, ice cream, etc. Cooked meals will not be prepared on site.

The proposed building is a single storey flat roofed building which will include a counter serving teas, coffees etc. It will have disabled toilets and a storage area, as well as a rubbish bin and bicycle storage.

Part of a nearby garden would be used if the application is approved.

The previous request was denied due to its “outside downtown location”. There were also fears of the risk of flooding and the loss of a residential garden.

Thorpe ward independent councilor Ron Woodley said he did not believe visitors to Southchurch Park had increased because of the car park.

He added: ‘I said there should be signs directing visitors to the car park. I was there on Saturday and there were only five cars.

“Considering the previous grounds for refusal in the context of the current regime, the proposal itself does not appear to have changed. It appears that a more comprehensive flood risk assessment is provided. However, the previous reasons for refusal do not seem to have been overcome.

Maria R. Newman