PROPOSED plans to bring a Starbucks drive-thru café to Bodmin is one step closer to becoming reality.

Cornwall Council have granted conditional planning permission to an application to build a Starbucks drive-thru on land at Bodmin Retail Park on Launceston Road.

The retail park, which has been open since the early 2000’s and currently features a Halfords, Snap Fitness gym, Pets at Home and Homebase, was joined in late 2021 by a branch of McDonald's.

Now, the developers behind the scheme, Colesbourne Asset Management Ltd of London, seek to add a Starbucks to land which is currently vacant on the site adjacent to the entrance to the retail park. It is proposed that the new Starbucks would open from 6.30am until 10pm at night.

It is anticipated that the new development will provide job opportunities to 12 people, comprising six full time and six part time vacancies.

Shortly after the construction of the retail park, the land was set to become a Pizza Hut restaurant, with planning permission granted in December 2005 by the now-former North Cornwall District Council. However, this development which was set to be constructed by the previous owners of the land, never took place.

Bodmin Town Council objected to the planning permission, citing concerns about traffic management on Launceston Road, which they say has already seen an increase in demand since the arrival of McDonalds.

The response from the town council said: “Bodmin Town Council objected to this planning application on the grounds of S105 and S107 of the NPPF - accessing sites should be safe and suitable for all users.

“The travel plan statement which notes the site was previously granted planning permission in 2003 with an expectation it would be completed in 2004. However, at that time no one envisaged a drive through McDonalds being there.

“BTC (Bodmin Town Council) have made numerous cases to Cornwall Council that Launceston Road is becoming a traffic nightmare and another drive through facility would over load the junction even further. Eighteen months ago, BTC were promised a traffic safety audit on Launceston Road and can not see how Cornwall Council could consider this application which would increase the use of the junction which could become unsafe.

“Traffic is often queuing down the road waiting to enter McDonalds creating a dangerous situation on Launceston Hill. Traffic calming measures and a controlled junction at the Asda Junction and Westland Motors Junction would serve to slow and control the flow of traffic creating a safer environment for all users. Subject to a transport safety audit from Cornwall Council where it can be evidenced that S106 provision should be made to remedy the problems that will be created.”

However, this was dismissed by the officer’s report produced by Cornwall Council, who said: “The Town Council initially objected to this scheme and requested that a traffic safety audit was carried out. However, while these concerns were noted, this was seen as a request which went beyond the scope of the scheme.

“However, a contribution to the Bodmin Transport Strategy was secured and a S106 has been agreed to ensure this contribution is made. With this in place, the impact to the highway was mitigated to a reasonable degree and officers were minded to approve, with all other matters accepted. In response, the Town Council maintained their objection, citing the same grounds. However, the Local Member (Cllr Leigh Frost, Bodmin St Petroc) did not agree with the Town Council and was not minded to request the scheme to Planning Committee. It was concluded by the Chief Planning Officer and Local Member that there was no planning reason to consider the scheme at Planning Committee and that no other decision, other than the one being made, could occur.”