Green light for restaurant chain to progress with plan for new venue

The former Argos store in Huntingdon. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

The former Argos store in Huntingdon. Picture: CONTRIBUTED - Credit: Archant

A fast-growing restaurant chain has been given the green light to move in to Huntingdon, after plans submitted to the district council were approved.

Loungers, which has more than 100 venues across the UK, applied in November for an alcohol licence and permission to change the use of the former Argos store, in High Street.

Argos moved into the Huntingdon branch of Sainsbury’s in February last year.

Loungers was founded in 2002 in Bristol and has enjoyed rapid growth since then, with outlets in Birmingham, Nottingham, Peterborough, and Manchester among others.

In the application to Huntingdonshire District Council, the firm applied for permission to serve alcohol at the premises from 10am-11pm, Sunday to Wednesday, 10am-midnight, Thursday to Saturday, and 10am-1am on New Year’s Eve.

Its opening hours will be daily from 8am until 30 minutes after the end of its proposed alcohol licence times.

According to the plans, Loungers will have “a variety of board games available together with daily newspapers to read and a free neighbourhood book swap facility”.

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Approving the plans, Laura Fisher, senior planning officer at the district council, said in a report: “The application site is located within the town centre of Huntingdon, which is a sustainable and accessible location. There are a number of bus stops located within easy walking and cycling distance and there are surface and multi-storey car parks in close proximity.”

Speaking to the Hunts Post in November, a spokesman for Loungers said that, subject to securing successful planning consent, it proposed to open the venue in the spring.