Supermarket plans clear final hurdle

A NEW Tesco supermarket which is currently being built at Beccles cleared its final planning hurdle this week when access routes into the site were approved by district council planners.

By David Lennard

A NEW Tesco supermarket which is currently being built at Beccles cleared its final planning hurdle this week when access routes into the site were approved by district council planners.

Earlier this month members of Waveney District Council's rural area development control committee unanimously supported the design of the proposed supermarket to be built in Beccles town centre on the site of the former Clowes printing works.

However, a decision on proposed access routes was deferred to allow more consultations between Tesco representatives and local residents who were concerned about a number of safety issues.


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These meetings have taken place and both sides were happy with the latest proposal put before the planning committee this week.

David Mills, who represented local residents, told the committee members that talks with Tesco representatives had resulted in a series of improvements from the road scheme that was originally proposed.

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“We have had friendly and constructive meetings with Tesco and the residents are particularly pleased to see that a pedestrian crossing on the new access road into the supermarket car park is to be widened,” he said.

Local residents were also pleased that Tesco have pledged to work with Suffolk County Council to get new traffic orders introduced that will prevent supermarket shoppers using narrow residential streets to get to the new store's car park rather than the proposed route via George Westwood Way.

“Tesco have also offered to meet with local residents six months after the supermarket opens so that any unforeseen problems can be sorted out and this is an offer we are pleased to accept,” said Mr Mills.

Committee members unanimously supported the new access proposals and it is hoped that the new store could be open later this year.

Meanwhile, a short distance from the Tesco site further along George Westwood Way, Beccles, another national supermarket chain was celebrating.

Yesterday the former Safeway supermarket became the 100th store in the country to be converted into a Morrison's store following a take-over last year.

The store's general manager Anthony Priest cut a ribbon across the store's entrance at 9am and released 100 black and yellow balloons to mark the occasion.

Earlier this month the former Safeway store at Pakefield, near Lowestoft, also converted to Morrison's.

The celebrations to mark supermarket openings in parts of north Suffolk are in sharp contrast to developments at Halesworth.

In June last year Albourne Estate applied for planning permission to build a supermarket with a 2,090 square metre retail floor space and an underground car park on land between The Thoroughfare and the Saxons Way relief road.

The application has split the local community with some residents in favour and other strongly opposed to what would be a second supermarket in the small market town.

The developers have still to provide district council officials with all the relevant information needed before the proposal can be put to the planning committee.

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