PLANS for a riverside café in a Chepstow castle car park have been approved by Monmouthshire County Council, despite concerns raised by residents over the visual impact.

The planning application, which was approved by the council’s planning committee last week, includes a two-storey pavilion in the Castle Dell car park, with a deck and a river platform.

The pavilion would boast a café, a function room, a kitchen, a servery, toilet facilities and a lift. The building would offer “unrestrictive views” of the river.

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Cllr David Dovey, who represents St. Kingsmark ward in Chepstow, said that he is not against the application but, as a ward representative, had been approached by residents with concerns over the visual impact of a two-storey pavilion.

Cllr David Dovey said: “From the Chepstow side, with it being on two storeys, it doesn’t look to have much of an impact on the castle.

“If you go to the other side of the river the two-storey building has an entirely different impact and it is important too.

“It (the pavilion plans) is in front of the castle gate… you’re going to have a situation where the castle gate is not going to be seen in its finest and I think that’s a great shame.

“I think a two-storey facility there is overbearing for the site which is of huge impact for people who come to visit the area.”

However, a report included in the recommendations for the planning committee determined the view of the castle would not be blocked by the café plans. The impact was considered slight and wouldn’t be harmful to the surrounding area.

Despite the concerns, councillors at the meeting praised the building designs and the wider impact the café may have in Chepstow.

Cllr Louise Brown said: “I think I would support this application because of the potential to improve tourism and trade within Chepstow.

“I think it would be a useful addition. This looks a good design and hopefully if coach trips do come into Chepstow it would help the local high street and local businesses in the area.”

Plans for a riverside building and cruise terminal in Chepstow Castle car park date back to 2007.

A revised plan was approved in 2012 to adapt the river access, but no work has begun in the interim.