Large Greggs restaurant with car park and outdoor seating area to open in Ferndown

A former car garage in Ferndown is to be converted into a Greggs restaurant after planning permission was approved.

The site, at Longham, is on Ringwood Road near the Haskins Garden Centre in a building previously used by Lamwell, next to Fernhill Dementia Home.

Dorset Council has agreed the conversion of the site over-ruling dozens of objectors who claimed it would be out of place in the village and add to existing traffic problems on the A348.

The creation of the new business will create one full time and eight part-time positions with the roadside outlet planning to open daily from 5am to 11pm, although the requested hours have yet to be agreed.

The change will include parking for 15 cars with the existing main building on the site only seeing minor alterations externally, although the interior will be revamped to provide a servery, food preparation area, toilets and around a dozen seats. An outside seating area for 32 covers will be added to the front of the building with large umbrellas.

The previous garage business, Lamwell, has already moved to an adjacent site, number 128 Ringwood Road where it continues to trade.

Among the objectors to the change of use was Ferndown town council which claimed the development would be “of detriment to the historical environment of Longham”, increasing disturbance to neighbouring properties, including the next door care home.

“The A348 is already a busy and often congested road and will be exacerbated by additional traffic accessing and egressing the site,” said the town council in its objection.

The view was shared by many of the almost 50 people who wrote to Dorset Council about the proposal.

Said one neighbour: “I object to this application due to the ongoing traffic volume issues in Ringwood Road. The applicant has chosen a high volume traffic location, but in doing so is creating more issues through the need to frequently pause the flow of traffic to let vehicles in and out of what is a fast food site. This impact is much greater than a car dealership, nursing home or even pub, which already exist nearby.”

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