Revised plans for a new STACK-style venue in Ponteland have been submitted after wide opposition to initial plans.

In September 2021, Northumberland County Council approved a licence application from popular Italian restaurant Rialto for a bar and seating area at the back of the site.

The owners then applied to the council last year seeking permission for a change of use from vacant land to a mixed-use development of a market square, made up of market stalls, street food vendors and retail units.

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The application received more than 100 objections, with residents raising concerns about a variety of issues including noise concerns and a negative impact on the character of the town.

But now Rialto has submitted a new change of use application, saying they have reviewed the comments received and amended the scheme.

The Northern Echo: 'The Orchard' will be situated behind Rialto in Ponteland.'The Orchard' will be situated behind Rialto in Ponteland. (Image: Google)

If approved, the venue would offer a food and drink servery, florist, artisan baker, coffee, and three street food stands. A family area is also proposed.

It would now have the capacity to accommodate 250 guests, with space for 124 seated guests on the ground floor and a further 58 on the mezzanine.

A design and access statement submitted alongside the application added that the materiality of the proposed design has been revised to achieve a "far more visually sympathetic and attractive design outcome that is in keeping with the location of the site".

Instead of using shipping containers, a more permanent structure is planned. Traditional materials such as stone, timber and glazing would be used.

The Northern Echo: How 'The Orchard' in Ponteland would look from the roadside.How 'The Orchard' in Ponteland would look from the roadside. (Image: NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY COUNCIL PLANNING)

Planning documents say The Orchard would "reinstate a focal point for the local community, increase the heritage value of the conservation site and provide the town with significant public benefits".

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The size of the proposed development has been reduced by 32% on the inital plans.

A planning and heritage statement prepared by planning agent BH Planning & Design added it is envisaged that the 'commercial and social hub' will accommodate events such as farmers' and Christmas markets, as well as other activities such as performances and yoga.

A large canopy will shelter the area, which, according to the planning agent, will "protect the market square from weather as well as provide an acoustic barrier from nearby properties".

There would be 21 on-site parking spaces, and access for visitors arriving by car will be through a one-way system from West Road.

According to the application, the scheme would provide 12 full-time jobs, and six part-time roles.

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