Sains­bury’s vows to carry on Asda battle

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS -

SAINS­BURY’S is re­fus­ing to throw in the towel in its bid to pre­vent a ri­val Asda store open­ing in South Ruis­lip.

The su­per­mar­ket gi­ant will con­tinue its op­po­si­tion to a £100 mil­lion leisure and shop­ping devel­op­ment, which in­cludes a 40,000sq ft Asda, de­spite hav­ing its ap­pli­ca­tion for a ju­di­cial re­view re­fused.

Sains­bury’s con­firmed it will re­quest a ver­bal hear­ing in the High Court so that its lawyers can ar­gue against the judge’s rul­ing and re­it­er­ate their case for the courts to re­view the process through which the Arla pro­pos­als won plan­ning per­mis­sion.

A Sains­bury’s spokesman said: “We’re dis­ap­pointed with the judge’s com­ments and still have a num­ber of ques­tions about the way in which Hilling­don Coun­cil ap­proved the ap­pli­ca­tion.

“We will be re­quest­ing a ver­bal hear­ing with the judge so we can dis­cuss our con­cerns and seek greater clar­ity on the points made in the re­port.”

The devel­op­ment would in­clude an Asda su­per­mar­ket, a cinema com­plex, five restau­rants, 14 houses and 118 flats at the derelict for­mer dairy site in Vic­to­ria Road. It is ex­pected to cre­ate up to 530 jobs.

Sains­bury’s has a store nearby, in Long Drive, which it has had plan­ning per­mis­sion to dou­ble the size of since 2006, but has not acted on.

The oral court hear­ing is ex­pected to be held within the next three months, fur­ther de­lay­ing the Arla project, which had orig­i­nally been sched­uled to begin in March.

Ci­ty­grove Se­cu­ri­ties Ltd, the firm be­hind the plans, has pre­vi­ously es­ti­mated that a ju­di­cial re­view could de­lay the project by up to a year and cost the coun­cil up­wards of £200,000.

Man­ag­ing direc­tor An­drew Ren­nie said: “It’s ex­tra­or­di­nary Sains­bury’s should de­cide to ap­peal the judge’s de­ci­sion. All of Sains­bury’s grounds for a ju­di­cial re­view were ro­bustly dis­missed.

“I am con­fi­dent that yet again Sains­bury’s ac­tions will fail, but it does fur­ther de­lay our abil­ity to start works to de­liver fur­ther fa­cil­i­ties and jobs within South Ruis­lip.”

Sid Jack­son, vice chair of the South Ruis­lip Res­i­dents’ As­so­ci­a­tion, said: “We’re very dis­ap­pointed Sains­bury’s are be­hav­ing in the way they are, rather than try­ing to work with and re­gen­er­ate the com­mu­nity.”

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