Council's plan to hide vacant store with 'hideous' mural approved
- Credit: Mick Howes
A council's plans to hide a vacant shop behind a "hideous" art mural have been given the go-ahead.
The application, submitted on behalf of East Suffolk Council by the Heritage Action Zone, was discussed by councillors on the northern planning committee on Tuesday, July 12.
The mural would also form part of an art trail throughout the town.
The shop front will be retained behind the mural for when the store is brought back into use.
Councillor Andree Gee said: "Quite honestly I would have been happy with possibly a board above the door with some sort of artwork but what we are seeing in the application is absolutely hideous.
"It does nothing to enhance the heritage zone of the High Street.
"I would like to see all those old buildings returned to lovely pastel shades and harmonise with each other, but this is going to stand out like a sore thumb."
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Councillor Linda Coulam said: "What is the reasoning for spending this sort of money on a building that is just going to be fancified up for a few short months, or are we expecting this to go on and on indefinitely for this to still be there in five years time?
"I do believe something on a building going in the old High Street should represent something in the old High Street.
"There are some lovely photographs and that butchers was absolutely lovely when it was working, and with all of our fishing heritage, to put something like this over that.
"I'm all for having this, but not that picture."
The committee were told the HAZ wanted the building brought back into a "meaningful use," with the art only a temporary feature.
Councillor Tony Cooper said: "We did the same thing in Leiston and the town was over the moon. I'm all for it."
Councillor Malcolm Pitchers added: "Anything has to look better than it does at the present."
The plans were approved by councillors by seven votes to one.