Salthouse crab shop owners set to expand property

The owners of a popular crab shop and caf� in a picturesque coastal village have put forward proposals to expand as a result of continued success with their business.

Cookies Cottage, which is owned by Sue McKnespiey and her husband Peter, is situated on the south side of the Coast Road on the village green at Salthouse and has a sea food restaurant business run from the premises.

In a planning application submitted to North Norfolk District Council for alterations and extensions to the cottage, it states: 'Partly because of the success of the business, Mr and Mrs McKnespiey now have to live on the premises all the time and they wish to make improvements to their living accommodation.'

Mrs McKnespiey said: 'This is for us to live as at the moment we are on site all the time. At the moment the living space is not very comfortable at all, it is like living in an office, we want to make it more of a home.'

The proposals are to build a two-storey extension to the southern end of the property to provide a rear entrance and cloakroom, with a bathroom on the first floor, and also to increase the height of the roof over the front area of the shop to provide a sitting room.

It is also intended to alter and re-position windows on the northern and eastern side of the building.

The report states: 'The proposed construction work will be carried out using materials to match the existing building, with brick and flint on the front raise section and oak boarding being introduced on the rear section.'

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The plans are currently under consultation.

In 2006 Mr and Mrs McKnespiey sought permission to keep a three year old wooden summerhouse at the caf� allowing customers to eat the seafood dishes al fresco, but in dealing with the application North Norfolk District Council planning officers discovered that the business which first operated in 1956, had never had permission.

The owners though were given a certificate of lawfulness in 2007, which meant they were allowed to carry on in business.

Cookies was opened 51 years ago by Mrs McKnespiey's parents Jack and Elsie Cooke. Jack, nicknamed Cookie, did the fishing crabbing and digging for bait and ran a fish and chip shop in Holt.

When her parents died Mrs McKnespiey took over and a couple of years later Peter, her childhood sweetheart from Sheringham High School, came along and they got back together and joined forces running the shop.