Hadleigh: Tesco still wants a new store in town

A SUPERMARKET giant will not challenge a decision to refuse it permission to build a new store in Hadleigh, the EADT can reveal.

Tesco had been widely expected to appeal after Babergh councillors expressed concern over whether their grounds for refusal were strong enough.

But with the deadline looming for challenging the July decision, Tesco said it would instead return to the drawing board to come up with a better design.

It means the long-running saga will rumble on for some time yet despite the supermarket chain expressing hope it will have new designs ready by the end of the year.

A spokeswoman for Tesco said: “We’d like to build a supermarket that is acceptable to the council and local people and therefore we will not be lodging an appeal. “We are now working on a different design and look forward to consulting the council and the local community in due course, on how we can improve this.

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“We have appointed some expert designers - a range of them - to come up with some ideas and we have started putting together some draft plans.

“These independent experts will tell us whether they think it is compatible with the heritage and feel of Hadleigh.

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“We don’t want it to stall any longer, it’s been a long process already. But we don’t want to rush things and make another mistake.”

Tesco’s plans for a 2,500 sq metre store on the former Brett Works site were narrowly rejected in July, despite Babergh District Council planning officers recommending approval.

Planning members refused the proposals because of the store’s design after being told concerns over its impact on traffic and independent stores were not valid reasons for rejection.

Brian Haylock, owner of independent bookshop The Idler, said: “If they put in a design like the Taj Mahal we could say we don’t like it. But I don’t suppose we’ll do that, I fear Tesco will get their way.

“I think it would change the whole nature of the town, which at the moment is a typical thriving British town.

“We shall go on fighting it, we’re not going to give in.

“But it does look disheartening sometimes especially when our objections are dismissed, such as those about the effects a Tesco will have on trade.

“I still feel the same about Tesco - I can’t accept them coming into the town. There are very persistent and I suppose we should be on our guard against them.”

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