STAR readers have expressed differing opinions on plans to create a restaurant close to a village railway station.

Initial proposals for an eatery on land next to Rainhill train station were refused by St Helens Council in March this year due to the "harm" which would be caused to "designated heritage assets".

The station and bridge are grade II listed structures, due to Rainhill's role in the world’s first inter-city passenger railway.

However, a fresh planning application has been submitted by applicant Mr I Mawdsley, and agent Mike Carr, seeking permission for a single-storey restaurant building and five car parking spaces.

The new plans say "the design principles of the proposed building have amended to further reflect the locality, including various historic features, along with the wider design principles set out in this part of the Conservation area".

They add: "Overall, it is also considered that the redevelopment of this part of Rainhill would result in the significant enhancement of a site that has been a local eyesore for many years".

A Heritage Assessment added: "The proposal aims to put the site to an alternative and sustainable use and thereby make a positive contribution to the local economy".

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Readers have been sharing their views on the proposed development, speaking for and against the plans.

One said: "Rainhill does not need another restaurant, there area wide variety already around this location. Proposing parking for five cars? When there is already a shortage of parking around there".

Another added: "There are already several eateries and plenty of licensed premises". They said "the station and bridge may well be of significant historical value but this piece of land, in its present state, does nothing to help either". They added "the area could do with a building "to not just 'fit in' but actually add something to the location".

Some readers spoke in favour of the plans and welcomed the prospect of the eatery in the area.

On the Star's Facebook page, Matthew David Jones wrote: "Fingers crossed it gets passed!"

Another reader added: "It's jobs for people".

The new planning application is on public consultation until Monday, September 28.

A determination deadline has been set for October 21.