JD Wetherspoon applies to extend opening hours of planned £1m Belper pub

The former Bugsy's Bar site on Strutt Street, Belper.
The former Bugsy's Bar site on Strutt Street, Belper.

JD Wetherspoon has gone back to council planners in an attempt to extend the opening hours of its planned £1m pub development in Belper.

The go-ahead was given earlier this year to transform the former Bugsy’s bar and diner, on Strutt Street, into a Wetherspoon pub and restaurant.

The change of use application was approved subject to conditions restricting the standard opening hours to between 7am and 11pm, with the beer garden closing at 9pm each evening.

Now the pub chain is seeking to increase its opening times between Sunday and Wednesday to 12.30am, and to 1.30am on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, along with extending use of the beer garden area for drinkers up to 11pm.

Accompanying documents submitted by Signet Planning, agent for the applicant, state: “The application proposes a public house which is identical to that which has previously been approved... the only difference being, that it is intended that the public house operates for longer hours.

“Furthermore, it is intended that the beer garden will be available to members of the public eating and drinking until 11pm and then only available to smokers through to the closure of the public house.”

The proposed extension “would not cause an adverse impact upon the nearest residential properties”, it argues.

The document also said the new application would “re-confirm” the proposed change of use and alterations, following recent occupation of the building by a clothes retailer on a temporary basis.

As proposed previously, the ground floor of the building would be used as the customer trading area, bar and beer garden, with the basement providing back of house areas including the kitchen and cold store, along with customer toilets.

The existing first floor area, last used as an office, would in addition provide staff facilities.

“The proposals will bring back to use an existing property in the town centre which is largely vacant,” the report adds.

“In doing so, the proposed public house will create approximately 40-50 full and part-time jobs which will support the local economy.”

Eddie Gershon, a spokesman for JD Wetherspoon, said: “Wetherspoon is as keen as ever to open a pub in Belper. We await the outcome of the application.”

A decision on the new application is expected to be made by Amber Valley Borough Council planning officers at the start of February.

Residents and interested parties can comment on the application using the online form at www.ambervalley.gov.uk.