Supermarket debate reignited in Shipston

Cotswold Journal: Masterplan of the proposed development Masterplan of the proposed development

A DEVELOPER that wants to build a supermarket in Shipston has submitted a new planning application for a massive housing development on the same site.

Ainscough Strategic Land (ASL) says a supermarket is still its preferred option, but it has now submitted a planning application to build 143 houses and 72 extra care apartments as a fall-back if it’s not given the go-ahead.

The supermarket plan, for a store, petrol station and ‘extra care’ retirement home is currently the subject of an appeal after being refused by Stratford District Council.

But the new housing application has re-ignited the supermarket debate in Shipston.

Some say the supermarket is better than the alternative of a mass housing estate, while others argue local facilities are not geared up to cope with the influx of residents that either plan would bring.

John Brooks, planning director at ASL, said a supermarket remains the priority.

“We have serious interest from supermarket operators and we continue to invest heavily in this proposal,” he said. “This new application has been prepared as a direct result of the distinct lack of support for our mixed-use scheme by planning officers and committee members at Stratford District Council.

“Notably, it does not include the retail element of the development and therefore addresses the single outstanding area of concern raised.”

Cllr Jeff Kenner, Shipston ward member at the district council, said: “The council now faces a clear choice.

“It must drop its opposition to the supermarket that people are demanding or be forced to accept a scheme for a new housing estate without retail that no one wants.”

But resident David Christmas, of Telegraph Street,said: “Neither our medical centre nor our schools can cope with the houses in either proposal.

“And, if development is allowed on one side of the Campden Road, what’s to stop it on the other side?”

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