The owner of a popular fish and chip shop in Marlow Bottom said he would feel ‘extremely let down’ if Bucks Council forces him to remove an eat-in cabin from his premises.

Gav Singh celebrated 15 years of running Oyster's Fish and Chips on Brucewood Parade in March – commemorating the milestone by unveiling a new cabin outside the shop to encourage eat-in customers and stop people having to “eat in their cars”.

However, for all his good intentions of promoting onsite dining over a delivery service – which would “cause more traffic issues through the village” – Gav, 50, has met the unexpected hurdle of Buckinghamshire Council demanding that a retrospective planning application be submitted because of the cabin’s incursion on parking spaces.

Although Gav owns the land, it's listed on the Land Registry as a car park, hence the council’s sudden involvement in what he had initially considered a “no-risk” development that "only takes up a single parking space". 

"The area has always been a blank space - no lines or specification of how many cars it caters for. And the cabin encourages people to walk in from the village rather than drive, it's become a meeting place. 

"When we were planning it out, I just saw it another way of serving the community, especially our elderly customers." 

Gav (right) and a staff member outside the cabin (Image: NQ)

READ MORE: Will the Labour government make a U-turn on Marlow Film Studios?

He is now facing a frustrating wait for the council’s decision deadline of August 28 and has had to pay “two or three thousand” to submit the retrospective application – on top of the lump sum of £25k he shelled out for the cabin in the spring.

The expansion of the chippie, which was named one of the best in the UK by Fry Magazine in 2020, wasn’t primarily intended to boost business, Gav said, but to make a “value offering” after years of pleas from customers for more in-shop seating.

He was hoping it would “secure our current customers” rather than attract hoards more – but the plan is now beginning to seem like more trouble than it was worth.

Inside the cabin (Image: NQ)

The 50-year-old, who also has restaurants in Lightwater and Camberley Old Dean, has hinted in the past that Oyster's may not have much life left in it.

In March, he said rising prices of cod and potatoes, alongside maintenance costs, meant he was paying double the amount year-on-year just to keep the business afloat – a “disappointing situation” that left him “running out of energy”.

Gav has urged and recruited loyal customers and Marlow Bottom residents to champion his cause to Bucks Council, but that same note of dejection is still palpable four months on. If the cabin is removed, he would feel “extremely let down”.

Buckinghamshire Council's case reference number for the application is 24/06451/FUL.