Mum of autistic boy faces new fight over West Hampstead cafe plans

A mother who successfully opposed plans for a new restaurant because she feared the noise would affect her autistic son, is facing a fresh battle.

Councillors rejected an Italian family’s bid to convert their furniture shop in Fairfax Road, West Hampstead, into a restaurant last November.

They reached the decision after determined mother Ingrid Bethell explained how the change would impact on her son.

Ms Bethell, who lives with her son behind the furniture shop, said noise from the proposed diner opening until 11pm would interfere with her son’s ability to cope.

On Monday, February 20 a new application was submitted to convert half of the furniture shop into a coffee bar and restaurant.

The plans still include an extractor fan, which Ms Bethell last year said would cause a particular noise problem.

“We are pretty devastated. It seems like a bit of a hollow victory,” she said.

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“I’m not one to give up so we will try our best and see what happens.”

She thinks there will be more objections than last time as lots of the residents in the flats above are unhappy.

“I have no objections to the deli which is already there but that is not a late night restaurant,” she said.