Plans to turn a former bank in Flint into a sports bar with flats above it have been given the green light despite concerns about the impact on neighbours.

An application to convert the old Barclay's bank building on Church Street in the town was considered by councillors earlier this week.

The scheme will see a bar created on the ground floor, along with two three-bedroom flats on the first and second floors.

The proposals submitted by applicant Lucas Hunter were backed by a senior Flintshire Council official ahead of a meeting of planning committee members on Wednesday (March 13, 2024).

It came despite ten objections being received due to concerns over anti-social behaviour and the potential for increased noise and disturbance to neighbouring residents.

Flint community councillor Carol Griffiths spoke at the meeting at County Hall in Mold to highlight residents' fears.

She said: “They've already spoken to certain councillors, and they've sent emails and letters complaining about it as they don't want it.

“In one of the houses right across the road from it, there's a lady there with a disabled child in a wheelchair.

“She said they already get enough noise from the people coming from The Dee (Inn) going up there.

“One day she had a fella in her garden lying on the floor there and she had to get the police out.”

The Leader:

Cllr Griffiths criticised council leader Ian Roberts, who she said was originally against the proposals.

However, she said the Labour representative for the Flint Castle ward and other members of his party later changed his mind.

She said: “They just supported it as they normally do. There’s more Labour than other parties on these committees but I pray to god that this year, we'll see a change and we'll get rid of them.

“I'm working class and I’ve voted Labour all my life but I'll never vote Labour again.”

Flintshire's chief planning officer Andrew Farrow recommended that councillors should back the scheme.

It came as he said it would help to bring an empty building back into use after the bank was closed in April 2021.

Barclay's blamed a drop in customers for the decision as more people switched to online banking.

Explaining his change of view on the application, Cllr Roberts said: “Church Street has suffered quite badly from the loss of its banks, as most towns and communities have in Flintshire.

“My concern when I saw the first application was that the whole of the car parking area to the rear of the former bank would become the beer garden.

“But after contacting officers I was told it would be the very small piece of land between the former bank and former Iceland store.”

He added: “With the issue about what goes on in other licenced premises in Flint when people are walking to and fro, I'm not sure it's a material planning consideration. That is obviously a matter for the local police.

“The need for shops is more or less disappearing, with large empty premises located next door to it.”


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Cllr Griffiths tried to interject by shouting out following his comments and was informed by meeting chair Richard Lloyd that she would have to leave if she continued.

Councillors were told that the sports bar would be open from 12pm to 11pm from Monday to Saturday and 12pm to 9pm on Sundays.

Cllr Mike Peers (Ind) was among those who supported bringing the former bank back into use.

He said: “This is a reuse of an empty unit on Church Street. The footfall is there, and I wish this success.

“We did consider the concerns of local residents, but we do need to have planning reasons to object.

“I think in this situation, it seems an acceptable proposition for the reuse of an empty unit with conditions in place to safeguard the local residents.”

The proposals were approved by nine votes to four at the end of the debate.