A FAMILY-run pizzeria business could be taking over a vacant shop in Christchurch.

The new restaurant has been earmarked to go at 103 Bargates, formerly The Crafty Knitter.

A planning application has been submitted to BCP Council to request the change of use from a retail unit into a restaurant.

While a name for the proposed pizza restaurant is not given, the application describes it as a “neighbourhood family-run pizzeria restaurant” with a “small amount of evening takeaways”.

The proposed opening hours are from 8.30am to 11pm Monday to Sunday.

The restaurant would hire six permanent staff members and two part-time employees, according to the plans.

The planning application also requests the installation of an extraction system within the existing chimney.

Bournemouth Echo: Proposed layout for the pizza restaurantProposed layout for the pizza restaurant (Image: Exflue Ltd)

A design and access statement submitted as part of the application said: “This extraction proposal for the pizza oven is to use the existing internal flue that exits the roof via an existing twin-walled flue where the old chimney was removed at roof level.

"This previously had a wood burner. Although a commercial premises this will be installed to HETAS Standards.

“The proposed pizza oven is DEFRA-approved for use in smoke-free areas and as it operates at a very high temperature it creates little to no odour.

“An air conditioning unit will be installed in the flat roof at the rear.”

Suggesting benefits of the scheme, the applicant said: “This restaurant initiative will significantly contribute to job creation within the primary retail district along Bargates.

“The proposed operating hours are reasonable and in line with comparable eateries on the high street, where other restaurants operate with varying closing times between 10 pm and midnight.”

The applicant added that given the site's location within a developed residential area, there are no trees in close proximity or “any discernible impact on the local ecology”.

A decision is yet to be made on the application by BCP Council.