Noise fears over city restaurant are quietened
- Credit: DENISE BRADLEY/Archant2021
A new restaurant in the centre of Norwich will be allowed to serve alcohol after a neighbour withdrew his fears about noise from the venue.
Go Bifanas, a Portuguese restaurant in Orford Yard on Red Lion Street, faced the city council's licensing committee after a nearby resident said it could impact others living nearby.
Nicolas Backhouse, who lives in Westlegate Tower, said in a letter to the committee that live and recorded music would be "inappropriate" for the location and was concerned the space would be hired out for corporate parties.
On Wednesday, the owner of the restaurant, Jorge Santos, offered to remove live music from his application, only keeping background music in the plans.
Stewart Gibson, an agent acting for Mr Santos stressed to the committee it was a small business, only serving alcohol to people eating food, and shared a seating area with a coffee shop in the same building.
"The entertainment part was purely to allow the flexibility to offer the venue for hire in the future, if the demand was there, for small company gatherings," he said.
"There was no intention and is no intention to use late hours on a day to day basis."
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Mr Gibson said it was considered more practical to include it in the application now rather than to apply for temporary licences each time.
Mr Backhouse said changes to the application addressed his concerns and the committee agreed to Mr Santos' application.
Speaking after the meeting, Mr Santos said they were looking forward to welcoming customers in the coming weeks after holding a 'soft open' on Tuesday.
He said: “It was never our intention to create noise or any issues with the neighbourhood, it’s a communal space, shared with the offices of two big companies, we want to add to the feeling of a nice communal area.
“We want to try to create a nice, quiet place to enjoy, for a mix of ages.”
The restauranteur said it was a new project next door to his established venue - Jorge's - with an “exciting new chef” who wants to create fusion food, blending Portuguese, Asian and South American flavours.
Explaining the choice of name, Mr Santos said it comes from a popular Portuguese pork street food sandwich.
Go Bifanas will open 11am to 6pm Tuesday to Thursday and 11am to 8pm on Friday and Saturdays.