Woodbridge: No plans for Tesco to move onto showroom site

THE director of a leading car dealership last night assured that retail giant Tesco will not be opening a store in one of its former showrooms.

There has been much speculation in Woodbridge that the supermarket chain is planning to move onto the John Grose site in Melton Road.

But last night David Grose said this had never been the case.

He said he was aware of the anxiety in the town but assured that the retail giant was not part of the plans.

John Grose has tabled a planning application with Suffolk Coastal District Council to change the use of the former showroom - which has now moved to nearby Ipswich Road - to a convenience store.

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Last night Mr Grose said they had already put plans together with retail chain Spar.

He said this would allow the company to run the store as their own, while also promoting local producers and creating jobs.

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“I was aware that people had been putting signs up around town with the Tesco logo, suggesting that’s what’s going to happen at the site,” he said. “However that’s not the case. Everything has been agreed in principle with Spar.

“It was never our intention to go in with Tesco or any of the other big boys.

“If you go in with them they want to run the store themselves. However by teaming up with Spar, John Grose will still run the business. We buy food and products from them but we manage it ourselves.”

Mr Grose said the current workshop and forecourt on Melton Road would remain.

“All we want to do is change the use of the showroom,” he said. “Not only will it create more jobs but it will also promote local products, that was a major reason for us in choosing Spar.

“They are very good at supporting local producers. That is at the heart of our local, neighbourhood business.”

The application for the change of use is expected to be discussed by Suffolk Coastal District Council’s south area development control sub-commitee next month.

A spokesman for Spar was unavailable for comment last night.

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