EXPERIENCED retailer Survjit Bains will open a fish and chip shop in Stratton this summer after planners said yes last week, despite opposition to the move.
In July last year, Survjit, 44, lodged an application with Swindon Council to transform one of the retail units at Stellite Works in Hobley Drive into a hot food takeaway.
Last week he was finally given the green light by the planning department, and he is now set to open within the next two months, ahead of summer.
Survjit is no stranger to serving customers face to face, after 20 years at the helm of Wingate Stores in Wingate Parade, Pinehurst, and more recently the Costcutter store, which shares the same building as his prospective takeaway.
“It’s going to fit in great with the area,” he said.
“It’s got the main road, it’s got the parking, and it’s got a lot going on with it, with the Subway and Costcutter there too.
“When local people want food and want it quickly this will hopefully be the place they think of.”
The application has not been without its difficulties. It received several objections during the consultation process, including from Sims Chippy in Beechcroft Road, Noffs Fish and Chips in Grange Drive and from Stratton St Margaret Parish Council. The parish council also had concerns over the position of the flue at the site, as it was due to interfere with first floor flats above the unit.
The flue’s proposed site is now away from the flats and heightened to reduce impact on residents.
Swindon Council officers told the planning committee that competition with existing takeaways was not a reason to refuse the application.
“It was a bit of a mission to get the planning permission” said Survjit, who will run the business with his wife Sukie, also 44.
“There were a few issues with the noise outside, but there will not be any issues with the equipment we will be using.
“It is the most environmentally friendly equipment available and it will work quietly.
“We are aiming at passing trade which uses the main road. We are not interested in taking residential business away from Noffs around the corner.
“People who know Noffs know where it is and won’t change, we want people who necessarily live in Swindon and pass by.
“There are (an average) 22,000 cars passing by on Hobley Drive and we want to take advantage of that.
“The planners clearly felt I had a strong case and if they didn’t they would have knocked it back.
“All of the people which have been coming into the Costcutter have said they would be behind a fish and chip shop 100 per cent. They think it’s the perfect business for this unit.”
A name for the shop is yet to be decided and work has not yet begun on renovating the empty unit, with black signage likely to be used to fit in with neighbouring Costcutter.
Three to four part-time jobs will be created when the shop is opened. The business is likely to be open from 11am to 2pm, and from 4pm to 9pm or 10pm, Monday to Saturday. It will be closed on Sundays.