Long­bridge res­i­dents ob­ject to bar­gain store

Birmingham Post - - NEWS -

PRO­POS­ALS for a dis­count su­per­mar­ket have been ap­proved in favour of a cinema and gym de­vel­op­ment de­spite dozens of ob­jec­tions.

Birm­ing­ham City Coun­cil’s plan­ning com­mit­tee per­mit­ted St Mod­wen’s ap­pli­ca­tion for the shop at Long­bridge town cen­tre.

Plans had pre­vi­ously been passed for a cinema and gym at the site next to Smyths Toys but the firm stated it has strug­gled to find op­er­a­tors will­ing to run them.

St Mod­wen has not con­firmed which re­tailer will be tak­ing on the new store, which will cre­ate 40 jobs, but they have com­pared it to Lidl and Aldi.

They also said the Aldi in North­field stood to lose the most trade from the new ar­rival as op­posed to Mor­risons and Sains­bury’s which are ge­o­graph­i­cally closer.

Cllr Karen McCarthy, on the com­mit­tee, echoed res­i­dents’ un­der­whelm­ing re­ac­tion to the lat­est plans.

She said: “It does con­cern me that the leisure fa­cil­i­ties are now not go­ing to be a part of this de­vel­op­ment. Now its go­ing to be fur­ther re­tail. I ac­cept the mar­ket is dif­fi­cult (for a cinema and gym) but as we have seen over re­cent weeks the re­tail mar­ket is not as stable as it might have been.”

Cllr Peter Grif­fiths also ques­tioned the amount of re­tail on the for­mer Rover works, which is al­ready home to Marks & Spencer and Sains­bury’s.

More than 30 peo­ple had ob­jected with the main con­cern be­ing that an­other su­per­mar­ket was not needed.

In­stead res­i­dents called for al­ter­na­tive big-name brands such as Pri­mark, IKEA and The Range.

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