IT HAS sparked comparisons to a multi-storey car park, a cable car station and a Second World War gun emplacement.

Now a proposal to build a £1.2m cafe-bar on a Hampshire quay has been axed following an avalanche of objections to the design.

New Forest District Council has withdrawn its own application - and says it has "no plans" to submit a revised scheme.

It follows comments received during the public consultation period and a "significant rise" in the anticipated cost of construction.

The council leader, Cllr Edward Heron, said “Of course we are disappointed it has come to this but it’s important we get this right.

"We have listened and it's absolutely the right thing to do to withdraw this project, especially as estimated project costs have increased by 25%.

“We are now talking with our partners so that a prudent approach can be planned for any future improvements to the area.

“Many of the excellent elements developed by Snug Architects were well received but we are not willing to ignore the number of negative comments this proposal received.

"Nor can we accept the increased risk of escalating costs as a result of the widespread cost inflation of construction materials.”

The council was planning to replace the existing showers and toilets with new facilities including a cafe-bar with a rooftop terrace.

But the proposal sparked scores of objections from people living in the town. Most were highly critical of the design while others said the facility would result in noise, anti-social behaviour and other issues.

Oliver Dunne, of Stanley Close, Lymington, said: "The proposal is hideous and out of keeping."

Pamela Hughes, of St Anne's Gardens, Lymington, added: "It's a dreadful design that is set to ruin the best part of our beautiful town."

Fellow objectors described the building as "unnecessarily brutal", "excessively overbearing” and a "ghastly carbuncle".

Critics included former Lymington councillor John Olliff-Cooper, who described the waterfront scheme as "inexcusably ugly".

He added: "It will be a terrible indictment of this generation's taste in architecture if the building is approved and completed.

"Design preferences are obviously highly subjective but there are certain styles that meet with general disapproval. The proposed design, which sits uncomfortably between 1950s post-war tasteless and Russian brutalist, is one such."

The council intends to carry out a basic refurbishment of the existing facilities on the quay in time for next summer.

Cllr Heron said: "The plans developed by Snug Architects were innovative, and closely followed a difficult brief for the area, and we are grateful for their work on this challenging project.”

Critics of the proposal included James Wild, who launched a Stop the Blot campaign after the proposals were unveiled.

Responding to the council's announcement he said: "This is fantastic news. I am very pleased that the council has seen sense and officially withdrawn the application.

"The design was ugly and totally out of keeping with the historic town and its quay which is, after all, in a conservation area.

"I hope the council will bear in mind the people's strong feelings regarding the look of the town for any future projects. I will gladly celebrate this decision."