Store expansion project starts

WORK has started on extending the Co-operative store in Hadleigh amid continuing uncertainty whether the town will get another supermarket.Bill Knowles, the Co-op's assistant general manager, said the work at the High Street store was expected to be completed within a year.

WORK has started on extending the Co-operative store in Hadleigh amid continuing uncertainty whether the town will get another supermarket.

Bill Knowles, the Co-op's assistant general manager, said the work at the High Street store was expected to be completed within a year.

Buildings, including the public toilets behind the store are being demolished and the bus turning circle in Magdalen Road has been closed, possibly until the end of the year. Buses will turn round using the Magdalen Road car park.

As part of its planning agreement the Co-op is to build a new toilet block on the opposite side of the road and will create disabled parking spaces behind the store.


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Once complete the shopping area of the store will be increased from 8000 square feet to 13,500 square feet.

Meanwhile Ken Turner, owner and managing director of the town's Buyright discount warehouse in nearby Calais Street, has moved to stop speculation that he is planning to lease vacant land on the site to one of the country's big name supermarkets in the immediate future.

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Mr Turner announced that he will be submitting a planning application to extend the Buyright garden centre onto the spare land as a temporary measure until a final decision is reached at the local plan public inquiry about whether Tesco is to be allowed to build a store behind the High Street.

He said: "Our site's been designated and I'm getting very frustrated at the time all this is taking, but it would be foolish to disrupt a very successful store until we have a decision.

"I think it's about time we did something with our land and we have a huge demand for garden equipment. We will be putting in an application within a month or so for a temporary extension to the garden centre to open next spring."

Earlier this year councillors at Babergh voted by a narrow majority that the preferred site for a store in the revised local plan should be next to Buyright.

But Tesco has already indicated that it is intending to submit another application for its choice of site, the Brett works industrial estate, and that it will be challenging the local plan at the inquiry, expected to be held in the summer of 2004.

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