NEW plans for the replacement of the Beach House Café on Mudeford Sandbank have been submitted.

Having withdrawn its first application for a larger, more modern building in the face of significant opposition from beach hut owners, BCP Council is now proposing a like-for-like rebuild.

The council said this would “preserve” the quality of life for visitors and beach hut users while not attracting increased numbers of people to the area.

It has a legal obligation to rebuild the café after the original building had to be demolished following a fire in November 2018.

Since then a temporary set up has been in place based from a series of converted shipping containers and food vans.

Cabinet members first gave their backing to a replacement at the beginning of last year, approving £1 million for a “more up-to-date” and larger facility on the sandbank.

But it drew a significant backlash from beach hut owners who accused the council of a “betrayal of trust” who called on the council to scale back the replacement building to something closer to the original facility.

They were backed by Highcliffe and Walkford councillor Nigel Brooks who said engagement with beach hut owners had been "inadequate".

This prompted the council to put its support on hold with a consultation taking place from August until October to gauge people's views.

More than 2,000 responses were submitted, half of which said the proposals would have a "negative impact" and this prompted the council to with

As a result, the council withdrew its planning application in December.

Speaking at the time, cabinet member for tourism, councillor Mohan Iyengar, said the council would make "substantive progress" on a more agreeable design in the following months.

And the council has now applied for permission for a like-for-like replacement to build the café almost exactly as it had been before the fire.

The only changes put forward in its new application would be to raise the height of the building to “mitigate flooding concerns” and to meet building insulation regulations.

Council architects PAD Studio said the changes compared to the original café were “modest” and that there would be “no perceivable increase in scale”.

“This is a sustainable development delivering a like-for-like replacement building which will blend in with the overall form and layout of the surroundings and the coastal landscape of Mudeford Sandbank,” its statement, submitted with the planning application, says. “Residential amenity of the existing beach hut users will be preserved.”

Seating numbers for café customers and the footprint of the building will be the same as it was previously.

The council had originally hoped to have the new café built and ready to open in May but the scrapping of the original project and submission of new plans will delay this.