Forgotten Co-Op may find new life as eatery

The former Co-Op store at Smiddyhill Road.
The former Co-Op store at Smiddyhill Road.

A former Co-Op store in Fraserburgh may be given a new lease of life after it has emerged that a planning application has been made to change the premises use.

If successful, the former Smiddyhill Road based store would change its designated use from a retail shop to a class three restaurant or cafe.

The application was made by the Co-Operative Group last month, with consultations from the council’s roads and environmental health departments due next week (September 13).

In their application to Aberdeenshire Council planners, Katie Wray of the Co-Operative Group said: “The change of use will also not impact on the vitality and viability of the defined Fraserburgh town centre.”

She adds that the proposed operating hours of the new restaurant will be 7am to 11pm from Monday to Saturday and 8am to 10:30pm on Sundays.

“We are happy for this to be a condition of the consent,” she writes.

The technical drawings accompanying the proposal suggest that three new openings will be created to accommodate polyester powder coated aluminum windows, coloured blue, to match those existing with concealed roller shutters.

A fire exit to the rear of the building will also be created.

Where, formerly, offices and storage space was located a new 57 metre square kitchen wil be created, the existing sales space of the store becoming a 175 metre square restaurant space.

The drawings also suggest that the existing toilet facilities will be expanded.

There have, however, been no proposals to create further car parking space for the new restaurant, the existing store allowing for nine vehicles, one a disabled bay.

The building itself is currently for let.

Members of the public have until September 18 to comment on this proposal via Aberdeenshire Council’s website: www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk.