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Tuesday, 30 September 2014

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Planners urged to back Ulverston supermarket bid

COUNCILLORS due to decide on two controversial supermarket plans for Ulverston have been recommended to reject Sainsbury’s application – but approve Robinson’s bid.

RECOMMENDED A computer generated image of the new supermarket at the Robinsons brewery site in Ulverston. South Lakeland planners have been advised to approve the application

The crucial South Lakeland District Council meeting to determine the outcome of the two bids will be held in Kendal on April 25.

In a hefty document released yesterday, the council’s planning officer has advised the committee to back the Robinson’s application for the old brewery site in the town centre.

The approval would be subject to a variety of conditions including issues surrounding highway construction, traffic management and a restriction on the sale of non-food items.

The report concludes: “The development would support the town centre and eliminate pressure for more out-of-centre retail development which would be detrimental to the vitality and viability of the town centre.”

In the same report, the officer has recommended Sainsbury’s plan for an out-of-town store off the A590 on the Beehive be rejected.

The officer concludes the supermarket development “is unacceptable” and the site would be better suited to the manufacturing sector.

Robinson’s application, which would create 200 jobs, prompted 41 letters and 176 postcards of objection and five letters of support.

The Sainsbury’s application, which would create 150 jobs, attracted 150 letters of objection and 140 letters of support.

Andrew Sanderson, Sainsbury’s Regional Development Director said: “Sainsbury’s is obviously disappointed by the officer’s recommendation.

“With regards to the Brewery Street site, councillors are being presented with a false choice. Sainsbury’s and other food retailers have looked at the site and found it unviable. We know there are traffic issues in the area and serious concerns have been raised by Save Britain’s Heritage.

“The council acknowledge the land has been earmarked in the Land Allocation and Development Plan for employment use. Our development not only creates 150 new jobs, but acts as a catalyst for wider development.

“The feedback received from the local community indicates that the majority of residents in Ulverston have clearly demonstrated that they would like to see a Sainsbury’s foodstore in the town.

“Support from the local community has been tremendous, the sheer amount of backing we have received during the planning process to date demonstrates that local people do want a new Sainsbury’s and we are extremely grateful to everyone who has written letters.

“One message that has been repeatedly expressed has been that people Ulverston need more retail choice. Many have said that they are currently unable do all their shopping in Ulverston and end up having to spend their money outside the town, in places like Barrow. A new Sainsbury’s would help to keep shoppers Ulverston.

“We will be robustly defending or plans at committee and hope councillors will approach the application with an open mind, especially considering the enormous amount of support the plans enjoy.”

Paul Kingsnorth, a spokesman for Keep Ulverston Special which opposes both plans, said: “The district council appears to be under the impression that they need to accept the Robinson’s development in order to fend off Sainsbury’s.”

Suzie Lawson, spokeswoman for the group Bring Sainsbury’s to Ulverston, which has a petition with more than 422 signatures, said it would be “a crying shame” if Sainsbury’s was rejected, both in terms of employment and convenience for shoppers.

Have your say

It is about time that council listened to the majority in Ulverston and approve the Sainsbury proposal. The support & secrecy over the Robinsons proposal is very suspect.
Let the people of Ulverston decide not a group of people who, in the main, do not live in Ulverston or, seem to care what is required or wanted. Let's have Sainsbury and the Jobs, choice and prosperity they will bring to the local economy.

Posted by James on 23 April 2013 at 13:44

What a clear effort from derampers to promote the wrong plan. I wonder how much sainsburys is paying them to keep banging on about it.
Ulverston does NOT need and out of town supermarket, it will kill the town. When will people come to their senses and accept what has happened time after time in other towns.
out of town supermarkets are a plague to the vitality of any town, Ulverston included

Posted by James on 23 April 2013 at 10:42

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