A FORMER cafe which sparked controversy when it was built in a Sheffield suburb has been put up for sale as a two-bedroom detached house with an asking price of £265,000.
The Crosspool Coffee Shop was built in 2007 after owner Stuart Hampton bought a triangle of land on the corner junction of Lydgate Lane and Manchester Road.
The 428 square metre plot of land, bought for £62,000 from Sheffield Council at auction in May 2006, included the area’s only public toilets.
Mr Hampton met resistance from locals when he applied for planning permission to knock down the toilets and build a cafe with a flat above.
They opposed the project on the basis of increased traffic, parking and congestion and because of the risk to a cluster of mature trees on what neighbours said was a treasured piece of open land.
Several residents also suggested the developer intended to turn the cafe into a dwelling in the future.
Mr Hampton’s application was refused in November 2006 because of concerns about parking and traffic safety, but it was approved in March 2007 when he amended the plans to remove vehicle access to the site.
The cafe was built and opened - but, now four years on, has been converted into a two-bedroom house and is on the market at £264,950.
It has received planning consent to change the building’s use from a cafe into a home with parking for two cars.
In a letter to the planning board, applying for the conversion, Mr Hampton said: “The cafe was not what the local residents wanted and I feel that to convert the building into a residential property would be more favoured by the local community.”
He said the change of use required “cosmetic changes only” with no alterations to the internal or external structure.
Susan Wood, of Cairns Road, Crosspool, in a letter regarding the latest application, wrote: “At the time this land was sold, many local residents were of the opinion the application for a coffee shop was a ruse to obtain building land at a cheap price, and a clever intermediate strategy for an ultimate successful planning application for a house.”