Co-op unveils plans for village store

THE East of England Co-operative Society has submitted plans for a new food store in Coggeshall.

The society says that, with a floorspace of 492 square metres, the proposed new store in East Street will still rank as a local “convenience” store, in keeping with a village location, rather than a large supermarket.

But it will be larger than the existing Co-op store at Doubleday Corner, which it will replace, and will offer a wider range of products as well as onsite parking.

David Cook-Abbott, the society’s group general manager for property, said: “Our existing store is quite simply too small to meet the needs of our customers and at recent consultation events in the village there was overwhelming support for the new store.

“We ensure that any new store we build, or any improvements to existing outlets, incorporate a range of energy saving measures designed to reduce our carbon footprint.

“Having recently been awarded the Carbon Trust Standard for the work we have done to reduce our carbon emissions, we are proposing many ‘green’ elements for the Coggeshall store,” he added.

The proposed store, designed by architects Hurley, Porte & Duell from Colchester, will replace a redundant garage and workshop complex in East Street.

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Measures to reduce the store’s carbon footprint will include a “green” Sedum roof system to reduce rainwater runoff and solar photovoltaic roofing panels to contribute to the store’s electricity consumption.

The society says the new store will also offer additional job opportunities for local residents, although the number has not been specified.

If planning consent for the new store is granted, the existing Doubleday Corner store will be closed but the shopping parade will be retained by the society. It plans to carry out cosmetic improvements to improve the street scene and hopes to attract a tenant to take over the unit.

There has been a Co-op presence in Coggeshall for more than 100 years, with a food store previously having been located in Church Street before the move to Doubleday Corner.