A popular Saddleworth brewery has been granted permission to open a tap room after being boosted by the support of more than a hundred residents.
Donkeystone Brewing Company applied to Oldham Council to relocate its business from Boarshurst Business Park to a new site on Wellington Industrial Estate in Greenfield.
The site on Wellington Road is already covered by an existing industrial use, but the brewery was seeking to change the use of the mezzanine level to a tap room, restaurant and retail sales area.
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There had been a huge response to the application, with 116 supporting letters and 38 objections.
One supporter wrote: “This would be a fantastic addition to the local community, it is just what Greenfield needs at the moment.”
Oldham Council has now agreed to grant permission for the development, but has limited the hours the new tap room can operate.
The company, which is a microbrewery producing craft ales and distilling spirits, had operated a tap room from its current site until the end of 2020, but this has now closed.
Under the proposals, the microbrewery and distillery on the ground floor would be operational 24 hours a day, seven days a week with staff on site from 6am until 7pm Monday to Friday.
Donkeystone had asked for the new tap room to be open 12pm to 11pm Sunday to Thursday, and until 1am on Friday and Saturday.
Many of the objectors raised concerns about the proximity to residential homes and the impact of the late hours, with one describing it as a ‘nightclub in what effectively is a tin shed’.
“The disturbance will be intolerable for local residents,” they added.
Another objector wrote: “The proposed 1am licence is ridiculous in a tightly packed residential area.
“Residents would face the prospect of music blasting past midnight before drunken revellers start to stumble loudly past down our street into the early hours, every weekend and more.”
However in the decision notice issued by the council, the hours are restricted to 9am to 11pm on all seven days.
No live music can be played at the site after 10pm, and the kitchen and heat extraction fans must only operate until 10pm at night to protect the amenity of neighbouring residents, including canal boats.
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The permission also includes new external staircases to the first floor, new pedestrian accesses and amendments to the car park, and the installation of liquid silos associated with the brewery.
Steven James, the director of Donkeystone stated: “Myself and our staff have worked tirelessly over the past year and a half to get through this period of massive uncertainty, all we want in return is to be able to continue our efforts and for the residents of Saddleworth to get behind us so that we can continue to build something that all our residents can be proud of.”