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NO DOUGH ZONE FOR PERGOLA! Pizzeria told to pull down outdoor area.

Byline: JACK EVANS News Reporter


N award-winning restaurant in a historic market town has been ordered to tear down a wooden shelter after locals said it "looked like Jewson".

The pergola was erected outside the Dough and Brew to allow diners to eat outside.

Boss John Martin said the structure allowed the pizzeria to cater for more customers while complying with social distancing.

The eaterie opened just yards from Warwick Castle in 2016 and was voted the UK's best restaurant two years later.

But council chiefs ruled the new pergola breached planning laws because the restaurant is in a conservation area.

The row erupted after locals slammed the 10ft-tall structure, with some saying it resembled a builders merchants.

IT consultant Sue Taylor, 50, said: "I feel very sorry for restaurant and bar owners because they are struggling to survive at the moment, but this just looks wrong.

"Considering the care which goes into their dishes, the pergola looks like a dozen planks were nailed together over a lunch hour.

"It looks more like a branch of Jewson than a nice restaurant."

Retired business owner David Morris, 67, added: "Everybody knows how hard businesses are finding it since coronavirus but standards must be kept.

"This town relies heavily on tourism, the main draw obviously being the castle which attracts tens of thousands of people every year.

"If people leave the castle and wander around the shops nearby, they expect to see a high level of attention has gone into their upkeep.

"I'm afraid this bodged pergola, which frankly looks more like fence panels, does not cut the mustard. I'm relieved the council feel the same."

Planning officers ruled at a council meeting last week that the pergola "harmed the look of the surrounding area".

Warwick District Council's development services manager Gary Fisher said: "The key issues here are very much around the impact the structure has on the character and appearance of the conservation area, balanced with the benefits of the structure to the business in question, particularly in the current circumstances. "Officers feel that the benefits could be achieved by an alternative structure with an improved design and appearance which would be more acceptable in a conservation area."

Restaurant boss Mr Martin said that the capacity inside the restaurant had halved since coronavirus restrictions were introduced.

He said: "The site is not located in an overly prominent part of the conservation area. Instead, it is in a quiet corner of the town behind Marks and Spencer and Westgate House.

"We plan to complete the work to a high standard and are happy to work with officers to agree to landscaping features and materials."

He now has a month to remove the pergola or face possible further action.


| The outside eating area at the Dough and Brew eaterie close to Warwick Castle

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Author:JACK EVANS News Reporter
Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:Nov 1, 2020
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