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Former Bishop's Stortford travel agent TUI to become 'healthy' takeaway for 'working classes on the go'

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A former Bishop's Stortford travel agent is set to become a "working-class" takeaway with an "emphasis on healthy eating".

Cem Camak has asked East Herts Council for planning permission to convert the three-storey former TUI premises in Market Square into a hot food outlet on the ground floor with two flats above.

The travel agent closed at the end of 2019 and the premises have been empty ever since.

Former TUI travel agency in Market Square (53788201)
Former TUI travel agency in Market Square (53788201)

Mr Camak's application to the planning authority says: "The limited footprint doesn't lend itself to retail use and there is very little interest in its use for same.

"While there is a choice of à la carte restaurants, there is a distinct under-provision of hot food takeaway outlets catering to the working classes on the go, but particularly one with emphasis on healthy eating.

"The proposed flats on the upper floors will again cater for town centre workers who need appropriate accommodation within the town centre where accommodation in the outskirts is too expensive or will involve costly commuting.

Zizzi in Market Square, before it closed during lockdown
Zizzi in Market Square, before it closed during lockdown

"The proposal will have no adverse impact on the existing social and economic characteristics of the area as it is simply an extension of the peculiar identity of Market Square with its varied eating amenities."

According to Paul Ailey's www.stortfordhistory.co.uk website, the building was originally a pub serving beer from Hertford brewery McMullen and unique in the fact that it only opened on Thursdays – market day. Later, a third storey and attic room were added.

East Herts Council is also considering applications from DOUGH&Co/Burger Amour Stortford Ltd to serve alcohol from noon to 11pm seven days a week in the former Zizzi restaurant premises in Market Square. The Italian-style chain pulled out of the town during the first Covid-19 lockdown.

Christopher Sharman, the man behind both Burger Amour and DOUGH&Co restaurants in the Anchor Street leisure centre, has not responded to questions from the Indie about his plans for the three outlets.

Chris Sharman outside his pizzeria in Anchor Street. Picture: Vikki Lince
Chris Sharman outside his pizzeria in Anchor Street. Picture: Vikki Lince

Greens Organics, a new café in the former Toni & Guy hair salon in Market Square, has asked for a change to its licence so that it can sell alcohol for 97 hours a week, up from the current total of 66 hours.

It wants to be allowed to serve drinks from 9am to 11pm, Mondays to Saturdays, and 10am to 11pm Sundays. Currently, the business, in part of the Corn Exchange, can serve from 8am to 6pm every day except Sundays, when operations are licensed between 10am and 4pm.

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