PLANS for a new ‘community centre’ for dog owners in Chester have been given the green light.
Trimdog Limited applicants have submitted proposals to Cheshire West and Chester Council in the event that the conversion of the former ice cream shop in Mill Street, Handbridge, into a pet supply store, grooming business for dogs and a hot drink stand, would require a change of use.
A council planning officer has now decided that, with no development planned, there will be no need for a change of use, given the site’s past as a glacier ‘Carte D’Or at the River’ and Alec Edwards shoe and handbag store. The new company, called “One Lucky Pup”, can therefore be created.
The claimant said: “During the pandemic, dog ownership has increased exponentially. The majority of dog groomers in Chester are based in homes where they have limited capacity and the small number of brick and mortar shops in and around Chester are also at full capacity with a minimum 6-8 week wait for appointments.
“As working life continues to change and more people are able to work flexibly, this demand is not going to go away and dog ownership is expected to continue to increase. These ‘new’ dog owners are also usually families or individuals who have not owned a dog before.
“They need more support and guidance than seasoned dog owners. A high street presence in Handbridge on a dog walking route to the meadows creates the perfect community hub for dog owners to visit with their pet to seek advice and support and to purchase products from They are also more likely to stay in Handbridge and spend in the local economy instead of taking their pet to Pets at Home and then spend money in big supermarkets.
“There is also a strong need to connect dog owners with other local pet businesses (trainers, walkers, behaviorists, guardians, etc.) and to create a local community of dog owners who can support each other. and the proposed development will be central with space and connections to help coordinate this activity.”
The new business would sell dog treats, accessories and grooming products, with a small number of tables inside and coffee and cakes available to eat in or take out, with around three employees in the store at a time. .
The company’s dog grooming section would be by reservation only.