Stowmarket: 130 new jobs as supermarket gets go-ahead

PERMISSION has been granted for a new supermarket to be built in Stowmarket that would create 130 jobs for the town.

The plans relate to a site at Sheringham Court, just off Milton Road South, and would see the former Seamans builders’ yard transformed.

It is thought grocery giant Morrisons would move into the new store, to be built by third party ISG Jackson (Southern) Ltd, but a spokesman for the firm last night refused to confirm the connection.

It is believed that Morrisons are backing the project and Lesley Mayes, leader of Stowmarket Town Council and head of regeneration, said the decision of Mid Suffolk District Council’s planning committee B was good news for the town in terms of jobs and competition.

She said: “I’m sure it will be welcomed by the town. That end of town does need an uplift, with Seamans having moved out. Jobs, at this time, are of the utmost importance. It’s really good news for the town and I’m really pleased that the town is showing signs of bucking the trend.”

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She said that after the disappointment of having a planning inspector turn down a bid to transform part of the run-down Ipswich Street area of the town, it was good news to see a major retailer looking to move in to Stowmarket.

The store would create 50 full-time and 80 part-time jobs and would provide competition for the existing Asda store in the town and Tesco on the edge of town.

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More than 30 conditions have been added to the planning permission, including one to add a pedestrian pathway through the car park for people using pushchairs and wheelchair users.

Planning committee member John Matthissen asked for the condition to be added to ensure people heading to the store by foot had a safe route through the busy car park.

Other conditions relate to contributions towards public art of �10,000 and �3,250 for landscaping along Gipping Way.

There will also be funds provided by the developer for a zebra crossing on Milton Road South and a new bus shelter nearby.

These would all be covered by a Section 106 planning obligation that forms part of the planning permission.

A spokesman for Morrisons said he could not confirm that it was planning to build a store in the town.

He said: “We would be delighted to bring our fresh food offer to the people of Stowmarket.”

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