Restaurant faces enforcement action

OWNERS of a new restaurant in the centre of a market town are being threatened with enforcement action over the replacement of an extraction flue.The new, larger flue has appeared on the roof of a restaurant called Off The Square in Church Street, Framlingham, owned by Stephen Matsell and Brian Norris.

By David Green

OWNERS of a new restaurant in the centre of a market town are being threatened with enforcement action over the replacement of an extraction flue.

The new, larger flue has appeared on the roof of a restaurant called Off The Square in Church Street, Framlingham, owned by Stephen Matsell and Brian Norris.

The pair say they have spent nearly £250,000 in refurbishing the premises which are Grade II listed and within the town's Conservation Area .


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However, while listed building consent was obtained for various alterations, officials say the new flue was installed without approval.

Now the owners have been told they may have to build a brick chimney to enclose the flue - to avoid damaging the streetscene.

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A member of the public alerted Suffolk Coastal District Council to the appearance of the new flue in May and officials made an inspection.

The owners were consequently told the appearance was unacceptable and that action would have to be taken.

Mr Matsell and Mr Norris had the flue painted the same colour as the walls of the restaurant, to try to make it blend in more, but council officers say this is still not good enough.

Now they are recommending that enforcement action is taken to force the owners to put forward a solution which is acceptable.

Andy Knowles, a senior planning officer, said yesterday that it seemed that a chimney “of some description” would have to be built.

Mr Matsell said that while he had sympathy with the aims of the council in protecting the Conservation Area, he did not think that legal action was the way forward.

“We would prefer this to be dealt with by all parties coming together on site and thrashing out a solution.

“When we replaced the old flue we did not think it would cause a problem,” he said.

Mr Matsell said building a chimney from ground level to enclose the flue would cost thousands of pounds and appeared to be an outsize solution to a relatively small problem.

david.green@eadt.co.uk

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