City residents relieved as Big Boys withdraws its bid for adult bookshop
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AN adult sex bookshop will not open in Wangaratta after an appeal to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) was abandoned yesterday.
The appeal was made by the Big Boys Shed, which sought to partition its Tone Road premises to sell pornographic material including magazines, DVDs and lingerie.
It followed a decision by the Rural City of Wangaratta to refuse the development on the grounds it would be detrimental to the amenity of the surrounding neighbourhood.
But the appeal was withdrawn at the last minute yesterday, just as the business owners, council and objectors to the development were due in the Wangaratta Magistrates’ Court to start the two-day VCAT hearing.
Big Boys Shed co-owner, Craig Patrick, said it was now the intention to sell the business and investigate options of opening an adult bookshop in another town.
“Over the last few weeks we decided we were going to look at a different area for that,” he said.
The result has been welcomed by rural city mayor, Don Joyce, who said council was responding to local community concerns in not allowing the development to go ahead.
“We represented (the objectors’) views well, council listened to them, acted for them and I believe it’s a good result,” he said.
“The decision was made on amenity grounds and we’re very pleased with the outcome.”
Denis O’Callaghan from local legal firm, Nevin Lenne and Gross, represented a group of Tone Road residents who had objected to the x-rated proposal.
Mr O’Callaghan said his clients were “extremely relieved” with the outcome, which prohibits the sale of pornographic material right
RELIEVED: Tone Road residents Jo Zeinstra, Peter and Sophie Freischmidt, Ray Gaskell and Henk Zeinstra celebrate their win over plans for a sex shop. next door to them.
“Some of the Tone Road residents have lived in houses in the same block as the Big Boys Shed and Kelly Country Fruits for more than 30 years,” he said.
“In one case, for more than 50 years.
“Our clients have tolerated having the current businesses operating right next door, and are pleased that Mr Patrick has curtailed his plan to proceed with the sex shop.”
VCAT also approved amendments to the original permit issued by council to operate the Big Boys Shed to ensure the planning scheme provisions were complied with.
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