Council turns down plan to move marquee at The William Cecil in Stamford

The William Cecil in High Street St Martin's, Stamford
The William Cecil in High Street St Martin's, Stamford

A hotel‘s plan to reduce noise from a marquee by moving it away from housing has been scuppered after planning permission was refused.

The William Cecil in High Street St Martin’s, Stamford, was this week told it could not move the marquee to another site within its grounds because it would spoil the character of the area.

The existing marquee, which lies 33ft from the nearest home, does not have planning permission.

The hotel applied to move the marquee after complaints from neighbours about late night noise.

In August South Kesteven District Council told the hotel to take measures to cut the noise from parties in the marquee and added several conditions on to its premises licence.

At the licence review Christoph Brooke, managing director of The William Cecil’s parent company Hillbrooke Hotels, told the council the eventual goal was to move the marquee.

But the refusal of planning permission now puts the future of the marquee in doubt.

The council turned the application down because of the visual impact it would have on the area. The decision notice said: “There are insufficient public benefits arising from the development to justify the degree of harm that would be caused by the proposed development to designated heritage assets.”

Following the decision Mr Brooke said he was considering the way forward.

A retrospective planning application to retain the marquee in its current location was turned down in July 2012.

The hotel appealed the decision and on Wednesday a planning inspector heard the case. A decision is expected in two weeks.

The majority of noise complaints have come from Stamford High School boarders living in Park House in Burghley Lane.

At the premises licence review the district council told the hotel to put up an acoustic barrier, move a smoking area away from the marquee towards the hotel building, implement a smoking dispersal policy, divert guests leaving the marquee away from residential properties and ensure a designated duty manager stayed in the marquee during every event.