A town’s former post office is set to become a cocktail bar after councillors gave the stamp of approval to plans.

Cannock Chase Council’s planning committee allowed the change of use of Rugeley’s former Post Office building into a drinking establishment on Wednesday.

But not everyone welcomed the plans for the Anson Street building, which has been empty for around six years, however.

Rugeley Town Council objected, highlighting the building’s location near sheltered housing. The town centre already has a number of drinking establishments, the council added.

Concerns were also raised by three members of the public.

One said there was a lack of parking on Anson Street. They added: “The residents of the street will have even less parking for themselves or guests visiting them.

“Opening times for the bar are until midnight six days a week and until 1am on Sundays. The bar is (metres) from residents on Anson Street and an elderly people’s home – the hours are extremely unsociable for residents.

 

“I’m very concerned regarding the increase of noise levels and potential vandalism from opening of the bar. We have seen an increase since the latest bar on Anson Street; the town centre has plenty of drinking establishments and I think it’s reckless and disrespectful to open another bar which is so close to residents of Anson Street.”

But the plans were recommended for approval by council planning officers, subject to conditions including sound insulation measures to protect nearby residents from noise.

Rugeley’s Post Office has moved into another unit in Anson Street. but the delivery office remains next door to the former site now earmarked to become a cocktail bar.

A design and access statement submitted as part of the application said: “The existing former post office is currently vacant and unused and has been for circa six years now since relocating to the WHSmith a few buildings along Anson Street. Although the exterior has not been subject to vandalism the building shouts vacancy.

“By bringing the building back into use this will enhance the kerb appeal to the town and bring in more consumers to the boost the use of the town.

 

A report to Wednesday’s planning committee meeting said: “The applicant has confirmed that music would be played at a low volume through the week. It is anticipated that live music would be played on a monthly basis in the form of a band or musical instruments only on a Saturday night and it would be finished by 11pm.

“There are several car parks within the immediate vicinity of the application site.

“The application seeks to reuse the existing building with minimal changes to the fabric of the building to facilitate the A4 (drinking establishment) use. The introduction of an A4 use in this location would bring into use a currently long term vacant building with a use that would assist with the local economy whilst preserving its special architectural and historic qualities

“The proposal would employ six full time members of staff and three part time members of staff.”