AN artisan pizza van has been granted permission to open up on the former Frenchay Hospital site, despite objections from some residents.
The One Pizza, run by friends Esra Koroglu Ward and Ayse Ozer, will serve customers only on Thursdays initially, after South Gloucestershire councillors agreed to issue a street trading licence.
Seven neighbours and Winterbourne Parish Council objected, raising concerns about noise, smells, litter and parking.
One objection was that the 3pm opening would “coincide with the afternoon school run”, and could encourage children at the nearby primary school to eat “fast food”.
But licensing sub-committee members approved the application on May 26, after hearing the two owners made healthy, “artisan” pizzas in a wood-fired oven using no oil, and promised to clear up all rubbish.
Esra, a librarian, told the hearing at Kingswood Civic Centre that the owner of Frenchay Park House had allowed them to use private land near the Grade II-listed building on the edge of the Frenchay Common conservation area, and that the van would not be left in the location overnight.
She said: “There were some concerns about healthy eating and it being fast food.
“We do understand the concerns but we are doing artisan pizza.
“We make the dough ourselves and we have all our ingredients bought from a genuine Italian supplier in Yate.
“We always buy our wood from a certified supplier, so when we light up the oven there is hardly any smoke or smell, because it is purely dry and we don’t use any other fuel like petrol to light it up.”
Esra said they had a five-star food hygiene rating for their van, which they have taken to food festivals and other community events.
She said their waste contractor would collect the rubbish and they would pick up any litter in the area when they closed, even if it was not theirs.
Esra added: “We are conscientious people and look after our environment.
“Frenchay is a beautiful place and we would love to keep it that way, because if we get a trading licence, we will become part of the community, so we would look after where we are trading.
“Our van is not going to be an eyesore, I can promise you that.”
Esra said they had applied to shut at 9pm so they did not attract customers on their way home from the pub, and the 3pm start was not timed for the school run but would be used for food preparation.
Members granted the application to sell pizzas and cold drinks from Wednesday to Saturday from 3pm to 9pm, although Esra and Ayse intend to use just one of those days.
By Adam Postans, Local Democracy Reporting Service