Raymond Blanc's latest pub plans refused

By Nicholas Robinson

- Last updated on GMT

Thrown out: Raymond Blanc's plans for new pub refused by council (image: Google Maps)
Thrown out: Raymond Blanc's plans for new pub refused by council (image: Google Maps)

Related tags Buckinghamshire

Raymond Blanc’s White Brasserie Company has had development plans for the historic King's Head pub in Little Marlow, Buckinghamshire, refused by the local council.

The pub and restaurant chain applied to extend the vacant building and connect it with another to create more dining and kitchen space.

However, the Little Marlow Residents’ Association took umbrage with the plans, which would have boosted the pub’s capacity to more than 200 customers at a time.

White Brasserie Company sites:

  • The Barley Mow, Englefield, Surrey
  • The Black Horse, Reigate, Surrey
  • The British Queen, Locksbottom, London
  • The Cricketers, Cobham, Surrey
  • The Hare, Old Redding, London
  • The Highwayman, Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire
  • The Jobber’s Rest, Upminster, Essex
  • The Jolly Farmer, Chalfont St Peter, Bucks
  • The King’s Head, Teddington, London
  • The March Hare, Guildford, Surrey
  • The Oakwood, Alderley Edge, Cheshire
  • The Queen’s Head, Weybridge, Surrey
  • The Sunn Inn, Cobham, Surrey
  • The Victoria, Oxshott, Surrey
  • The White Bear, Ruislip, London

In a meeting last month, Wycombe District Council’s planning committee threw the White Brasserie Company’s proposals out on the grounds of limited parking.

Unsustainable location

Notes from the meeting, and seen by The Morning Advertiser ​(MA​), ​read: “In the opinion of the local planning authority, the proposal, by virtue of the limited number of parking spaces available for this premises, together with the configuration of these spaces, was considered to provide inadequate parking for the size of development proposed taking into account its unsustainable location and the reliance of the business to attract customers from outside the immediate locality. 

“There was nowhere for displaced parking to be readily accommodated nearby and, accordingly, the proposal would lead to the loss of residential amenity and inconvenience for users of the highway.”

An unacceptable strain on parking made the business a “non-starter” according to councillor David Johncock in local paper the Twyford Advertiser​.

Given the choice, it would be better the historic pub was converted to a residential dwelling, said Johncock.

“Do we want it [the King's Head] back in use, yes – but not at any cost,” he added.

White Brasserie Company

White Brasserie Company marketing director Kathryn Coury told MA ​the decision was not something the company was willing to comment on at the moment.

Raymond Blanc’s White Brasserie Company, launched earlier this decade, currently has 15 pubs across the south-east and London, as well as one in Cheshire.

The gastropub chain has expanded over the years, bringing its French-brasserie style of home cooking to a British pub environment.

In 2013, Blanc announced plans to open a series of pubs that year and more the following year, mainly targeting sites within the M25. He already owned two sites at this point, but 2013 was effectively the launch of the White Brasserie Company as a gastropub chain.

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