Archive for 29th July 2008

No Tesco campaigners urge councillors to vote against report

The No Mill Road Tesco Campaign is urging Councillors to vote against the recommendations of the planning officers report on the latest Tesco application when they meet on Thursday night.

Planning Officers have again recommended approval of Tesco’s application – this time for a refrigeration plant and air conditioning unit on the existing site on Mill Road. But the No Mill Road Tesco campaign believes the report is based on two false assumptions.

Firstly, campaigners believe the assertion in the report that issues of deliveries and waste are irrelevant is simply untrue. If Tesco is really serious about opening a smaller store, all the other impacts of a Tesco Express opening on this site will necessarily follow from approval of this application. Deliveries, waste and other issues are as relevant to this attempt to open an Express store as they were to the last attempt. This means all the reasons why the last application was refused on delivery grounds still apply.

Secondly, planners have ignored the fact that Tesco’s acoustic report, on which the recommendation is based, is fundamentally flawed. No Mill Road Tesco approached an acoustic consultant to look at the report when it was published, and he found a number of serious problems in the way Tesco’s acoustic consultants did their tests. This is the only document the council uses to judge the noise impact of the planning application. The planning officers have recommended approval based entirely on Tesco’s own, fundamentally unreliable acoustic report.

Ruth Deyermond, planning coordinator for the No Mill Road Tesco campaign commented “There is simply no sound basis for approval of this application. If you think that issues such as road safety traffic congestion, and the impact on local residents are relevant, which the planning guidance says they are, then the application needs to be refused. But even if you agreed with the planning officer that only the direct impacts of the air conditioning and refrigeration units are relevant then the application would still have to be refused on planning grounds. Tesco’s acoustic report is the only evidence on which the planners are asking the councillors to judge the application, and it simply doesn’t stand up to even the most basic scrutiny.”

Sonia Cooter, campaign coordinator added “We were expecting the council’s planning department to recommend approval, but the poor quality of the report has surprised us. We are urging everyone in the Mill Road area to come along to the East Area Committee meeting on Thursday, 31st July at 7.30pm in St Philip’s Church, Mill Road, and let our councillors know – this is not acceptable”.

Newsletter July 2008

On Thursday 6th March, Tesco received their first major knock in their attempts to open a shop on Mill Road. You turned out in your hundreds to St Philips Church, to watch the East Area Committee Councillors vote unanimously against Tesco extending the old Wilco shop to make it a viable space for them to trade in.

Read our new Newsletter, July 2008