Cafe gets go ahead

A new cafe can be set up at a former church in Milton of Campsie after councillors approved a planning application.

East Dunbartonshire Council’s planning board recently backed the recommendations of planning officers and conditionally approved the application to create a cafe in the church in Antemony Road.

The application had attracted some opposition, with objections from individual residents as well as Milton of Campsie Community Council and the Village Hall Trust.

These objections raised several concerns, ranging from the impact on existing local businesses, a lack of parking facilities resulting in increased traffic congestion, and a desire for the building to be used in some other way.

In supportin documents, the applicant, a Mr Saraj, said: “It has been made clear that the people of Milton of Campsie hold a strong connection to the church.

“I want to convert the ground floor of the church to a cafe as it would be an excellent way of providing local people with a social space they feel comfortable and familiar with.

“It will have an accessible entrance for all users. In addition, it will have an accessible toilet and baby changing facilities.

“The market should welcome competition and having a variety of options will be beneficial to the people living in Milton of Campsie.

“The purpose of the cafe is to provide a service for local people who will be less inclined to use vehicular transport considering the proximity of the church for the local community.

“There is also a suggestion that there are other ways the church could be utilised for the benefit of the local community.

“It the space were to be hired out as a multi-use area, people are more likely to travel greater distances to use the facilities. This will without a doubt have a negative effect upon the community as it will increase traffic congestion.

“When I purchased the church, I promised to look after the historical building and to utilise it in a manner which would benefit the community.”

Conditions imposed restrict delivery hours, set a maximum limit on noise, forbid deep fryers without a separate planning application, set acceptable hours for construction work, require the applicant to install an effective ventilation system and restrict the cafe’s opening hours.