COUNCILLORS have given the go-ahead for extended weekend opening hours at a Saltcoats beer garden.

Elms Bar, in Raise Street, was granted permission in January for the formation of a beer garden with a number of conditions – including a restriction on operating times on Saturdays.

The pub was ordered to limit opening hours of the beer garden to 4.30pm-10pm on Saturdays to minimise noise disturbance to the neighbouring health centre and nearby residential properties.

However, an appeal by the applicants, which went before North Ayrshire Council’s local review body (LRB) last week, resulted in that decision being overturned.

Information presented to the LRB by pub bosses stated: “My request is for the planning department to review only the proposed opening hours of 1630 to 2200 hours on Saturdays as outlined in ‘condition one’ of the conditional planning permission.

"I have established by contacting both the health centre practice manager and the senior manager of Gallagher Pharmacy (pharmacy operating within the health centre) that the previous information provided to planning on the pharmacy opening hours on Saturday being 0900 to 1630 hours were incorrect and obsolete and that in fact the pharmacy was indeed closed on both Saturday and Sundays.

“I hereby request that on this information provided, that this condition on Saturday opening hours be amended to 1300 to 2200 hours the same as the proposed opening hours on a Sunday.”

Members of the LRB upheld the applicants’ appeal and subsequently agreed to grant the application and amend the condition on opening hours.

The beer garden will now be able to operate between the hours of 6pm and 10pm Monday to Fridays and 1pm and 10pm on Saturdays and Sundays.