New Tesco store gets the go-ahead for derelict site

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A NEW Tesco store has been given the go-ahead despite nearly 90 objections.

The former Manor Service Station, in London Road, Purbrook, has been derelict for at least 10 years.

But the supermarket giant has now won permission to turn it into an Express convenience store.

The site sits in St John’s conservation area where some buildings date back to the 12th century. There were concerns over the design of the shop and the three flats above.

And there were fears that the One Stop shop opposite – which is also owned by Tesco – would close, with the loss of the Post Office within it.

But it was revealed at last night’s Havant Borough Council planning meeting that Tesco has agreed to enter into negotiations with the Royal Mail to take on the Post Office should the One Stop close.

However this is not something the council could force it to do.

Councillors felt it was time something was done with the site and approved the plans.

Councillor Elaine Shimbart said: ‘I think this site has been a blot on the landscape for long enough. I’m sure most of the residents will agree. This will bring employment to the area and I imagine it will bring trade to the businesses and shops on the other side of the road.

‘The design is OK.’

There were also concerns from some councillors over where the new staff of up to 40 would park.

A parking management strategy will now be discussed with Tesco.

Sue Harvey, chairman of the Purbrook and Widley Area Residents’ Association, made a representation urging councillors to refuse the application.

But, on hearing the decision, she said: ‘We are pleased that a very derelict site that has been in a bad state for many years has finally been resolved.

‘Though we’re a bit disappointed perhaps we did not get the best design and there are still a few issues about amenities and parking.’