Monday 26 March 2012

AM requests Sainsburys application call-in

A call-in request has been made to the Welsh Government concerning the proposed Sainsbury store in Llandeilo by William Powell, Lib Dem Assembly Member for Mid and West Wales. As I said in this post, this application is due to be considered by Carmarthenshire Council Planning Committee meeting on Thursday (29th March);

(I have copied the text here for clarity)
E/25041: Proposed Sainsbury Store at Llandeilo – Call in request

     Following an extensive planning period Carmarthenshire County Council will consider the above application on Thursday 29th March, 2012. Since the plans were originally made public it is clear that the case being presented has changed substantially, and as such the development’s numerous objectors have only been given three working days to consider their response and how the proposal will impact the local area. This is unacceptable and I am formally requesting the calling in of the application by your office, in order for it to be given the full oversight and consideration it requires.
     As the Carmarthenshire County Council Planning Committee Report makes clear, the current proposals represent a significant departure from planning guidance E7 and R7 and in doing so clearly states that “the proposal would conflict with development plan policy in respect [to] loss of employment land and the site’s position relative to the town centre.”
     While this conflict, and the lack of time made available for public exploration of the amended application, should be enough to justify a call in alone; I am also deeply concerned about the cumulative retail impact of related proposals to the sounding area. The Llandeilo proposal must be considered in tandem with further proposed Sainsbury’s superstores in Ammanford and Cross Hands. Given the perilous condition of rural market towns across Wales it is essential that any and all applications be considered with respect to the need to sustain small businesses and the health and viability of town centres. As such wider questions must be asked about the regional impact of these cumulative proposals and whether the damage done to, and jobs lost from small businesses as a result, outweighs the potential benefits of periphery development E/25041.

     Furthermore, the lack of time afforded to existing and other potential objectors has not allowed sufficient resources to be devoted to a full and comprehensive environmental assessment of how the amended proposal impacts on the surrounding Afon Tywi flood-plain. It is clear that any developments on such plains must benefit from a full and proper analysis, and that the Carmarthenshire County Council Planning Committee Report highlights the fact that the proposal is yet to receive a formal response from the Countryside Council for Wales. It is of principal importance that development decisions be taken with full respect given to their potential impact on biodiversity and the wider ecological impact upon the surrounding environment. It is clear that this has yet to fully occur in this case.
     Taken together it is clear that further work needs to be done to ensure that the people of Llandeilo get the best possible solution for their needs. While it is apparent that Carmarthenshire County Council is minded to accept the current proposal, I argue the necessity for calling in so that time is allowed for critics to fully respond, and that a complete picture is gained of how to best benefit the area.

William Powell AM

John Griffiths AM
Kirsty Williams AM
Rhodri Glyn Thomas AM
Jonathan Edwards MP

Update 29th March; I hear that both the Llandeilo and the Cross Hands stores were approved by the planning committee today.
I also understand that the application for Llandeilo may be referred to the Welsh Assembly anyway as it is a departure from policy (E7 and R7) and comes under the criteria of the 'Shopping Directive' for retail developments and so must be referred.


Tessa said...

Wow! That's encouraging!

Anonymous said...

resubmitting a previous application with no obvious improvements seems to be a waste of time....but.....

the application was turned down on conditions AND an adverse effect on trade.

if sainsbury or whoever came to ammanford, i would have thought with others straight away the co-op will get it in the neck. but that was before lidl came along..

after a chat just now and looking at it from another angle, i wonder why a certain councillor has spokenin the press? maybe a bit of electioneering? maybe as a concerned resident? maybe as a concerned party? but why?

could it be they were turned down because they don't want anything to happen to tesco?

maybe the co-op will not be as affected as much as thought...

to the layman, as i have already mentioned ammanford has enough stores..

since the new tesco store opened last august with press reports mentioning 100 new shop jobs -
9:34am Wednesday 12 November 2008

ONE hundred new jobs are coming to Ammanford after planners gave permission for a bigger Tesco to be built in the town.

did they actually create 100 new jobs on top of the pre-existing staff?

it has been said they are not doing as much as they projected.. some staff say they haven't.

what if a sainsbury etc came to ammanford and affected tesco more. it wouldn't be nice looking if tesco upped sticks and leave rather a large building with a large carpark standing empty and idle, would it?

is it really a case of saying no because it'll affect the town? i din't hear any outcry when tesco first came.. there wasn't much of a murmur when lidl came along..

the original complaints with a bigger teso store were to do with it'll kill off the town... maybe tesco already had done that in the beginning, but we had somerfield and kwiksave going as well. they both went eventually, one was replaced with home bargains.

would the co-op go if an asda or a sainsbury or a morrison came?

or do ants protect the queen at all costs?