Pe­ti­tion plea to stop plans for new store

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Tesco Smash - By Vicky Cas­tle

A pe­ti­tion to stop a new con­ve­nience store be­ing built on the God­in­ton Park es­tate has col­lected more than 200 sig­na­tures.

Con­tro­ver­sial plans to build a 400 sq me­tre shop in the car park next to the New Chim­neys pub in Loudon Way were sub­mit­ted to Ash­ford Bor­ough Coun­cil (ABC) last year.

Neigh­bours have warned the pro­pos­als could put the nearby God­in­ton Stores shop out of busi­ness, cause con­ges­tion and in­crease the num­ber of ac­ci­dents.

If ap­proved the store would be built in the car park along­side the pub, mean­ing 30 car park­ing spa­ces would be lost.

The car park, which is pri­vately owned, is used by cus­tomers of the pub, the nearby shops, God­in­ton Vil­lage hall and God­in­ton Pri­mary School.

The open­ing of the store would also cre­ate 20 jobs – 10 part-time and 10 full-time.

The pe­ti­tion, started by the owner of God­in­ton Stores and signed by 206 peo­ple, will be handed over to Ash­ford Bor­ough Coun­cil.

It says: “We al­ready have enough shops within a one mile ra­dius. Res­i­dents in the re­tire­ment cen­tre op­po­site are en­joy­ing the at­mos­phere, so if plan­ning per­mis­sion is granted, their en­joy­ment will be de­stroyed.

“The us­age of the car park will be re­stricted, traf­fic and con­ges­tion will in­crease and safety of young chil­dren will have to be taken into con­sid­er­a­tion. It should be re­fused plan­ning.”

An ABC spokesman said the de­ci­sion to refuse or ap­prove the ap­pli­ca­tion will be made by plan­ning of­fi­cers ‘shortly.’

He said: “We re­ceived amended plans but they were not deemed ap­pro­pri­ate and so fur­ther con­ver­sa­tions with the ap­pli­cant were re­quired.

“The ap­pli­ca­tion can be signed off by of­fi­cers un­der the del­e­gated pow­ers they have and a de­ci­sion will be is­sued shortly.”

For more in­for­ma­tion go to plan­ning.ash­ford.gov.uk and search 15/01032/AS.

The car park next to the New Chim­neys pub could have a store built on it

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