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Costa Coffee branch allowed in Hinchley Wood after Planning Inspectorate decision
A third branch of Costa Coffee will open in Hinchley Wood, after the Planning Inspectorate overturned a refusal for the premises.
Plans to convert 30 Station Approach to the coffee shop were thrown out by Elmbridge Council in January because of "a loss of an existing retail unit".
But the national chain, which already has express branches at the Shell petrol station and Budgens in Hinchley Wood, appealed the council’s decision weeks later.
In her report, planning inspector Roisin Barrett granted permission for the store, which has been vacant for more than 14 months, but prevented Costa from cooking unprepared food on the premises, only allowing reheated or cold food that has been prepared elsewhere to be served at the shop.
The store will open from 6.30am to 6.30pm Monday to Saturday and 7am to 6pm on Sundays.
Hinchley Wood Residents’ Association Councillor Janet Turner said: "One of our biggest concerns was the parking issues in Hinchley Wood. People who normally use Costa Coffee branches are there for about an hour to an hour and a half.
"Parking space in Hinchley Wood is at a premium. We only have the square to park in and if that gets filled up there is not enough space for people to park when they use the local shops.
"We want to keep out village as vibrant as possible but to do that we need people to be able to come and go and park otherwise our shops lose out."
The development of the coffee shop must be started before June 16, 2017, when planning permission ceases.