Strong views about cafe plans for Hotham Park

OPPONENTS of a proposed cafe at a Bognor Regis park have criticised its location and design.

Public consultation on plans for the £350,000-£390,000 visitor attraction in Hotham Park closed last week.

Arun District Council wants to site the single-storey cafe – with 36 indoor seats and 33 outdoor – close to 
the park’s southern boundary, west of its boating lake.

Ian Harris, of Hotham Park House, told Arun he liked the cafe’s attractive design but he believed the location was wrong.

“After dark, the park is very dark and no-one is going to walk through to get to the cafe.

“It seems to be the council has decided on this location simply because it put utilities on the site years ago when the park was renovated...”

The better location would be on the putting green next to the car park by the park’s lodge entrance, he said.

Rosemary Warren, of Hotham Park Heritage Trust, said: “The trust objects to the planning application on the grounds that it is a risk to public safety and destroys too much parkland.”

The trust has called for changes to the delivery route for the cafe and alterations to the building’s design. These would help to lessen its siting in a location which it believes is unsuitable.

Bognor Regis Town Council objected to the cafe’s design as both inappropriate and unsympathetic.

But Stan Jonas, chairman of BRighter Bognor, said the group liked the location close to the lake and railway.

“We like the character and form and appearance of the proposed building,” he said. The design and the layout were suitable.

Arun received five external responses to the plans. They have yet to be decided by councillors.