New talks on controversial restaurant

Sambuca Golf on the Whitley Bay Links.
Sambuca Golf on the Whitley Bay Links.

FURTHER discussions are set to take place over plans to build a new restaurant on an area of open green space near Whitley Bay.

Proposals by restaurant chain Sambuca to turn the mini golf hut on The Links into a restaurant were approved last month by North Tyneside Council’s planning committee, despite strong objections from nearby residents.

The residents have continued their opposition to the plans, saying the proposals go against the covenant in place for the Links.

And they have been boosted by news that the lease has not yet been signed, with further discussions due to take place.

Councillors discussed the situation at their meeting last Thursday, and agreed for the debate to go back to cabinet on Monday for further discussion on whether or not a lease can be granted due to the authority being the landlord.

Deputy mayor, and St Mary’s ward councillor, Judith Wallace, said: “We are aware of residents’ concerns and views. They will be taken into account.”

The debate on Monday is due to take place behind closed doors due to the financial sensitivity involved.

Local residents have welcomed the latest development.

A spokesman for the Friends of the Links said: “This surprise development is very welcome from our point of view.

“It means people are finally listening to the strong protests of the residents of Whitley Bay, and it represents possibly a final chance for us and our many supporters to get this development stopped once and for all.

“We are not against anything that will help improve Whitley Bay, but we are against anything that will spoil the area.

“Here we have an area of peace, quiet and beauty.

“In the surrounding area there are many restaurants and pubs.

“There is no need for another food outlet.

“If the restaurant were to go ahead, it is an undeniable fact that the area will be altered.

“There will be litter and noise and light pollution and inevitably more concreted areas for cars if the venue proves popular.

“This is already a popular area. Why should leisure facilities for all be spoiled by a development that isn’t necessary?”