Amanda Holden back campaign to stop Sainsbury's Bishop's Waltham plan

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Britain's Got Talent judge Amanda Holden is throwing her support behind a campaign to prevent a supermarket being built in her home town.

The Bishop's Waltham Action Group has been campaigning to stop Sainsbury's building a 35,000sq ft superstore on the edge of the town. And the actress-turned TV panel judge is right behind them.

She said: 'It is definitely a no for Sainsbury's from me. We don't need a Sainsbury's, we have nice little village shops here and it is these people's businesses that will suffer if this superstore is allowed to be built.

'It is terrible that it would be built right by one of our historic monuments.'

Now the formal application has gone in, the group will be handing in a petition with 4,500 signatures to Winchester City Council tomorrow. The consultation period ends on August 5.

Amanda was born in the town and used to work in Hylands, a greengrocer.

The proposed site is next to the medieval South Pond and the ruins of the Bishop of Winchester's Palace, both designated ancient monuments.

Tony Kippenberger, BWAG chairman, said: 'It is absolutely vital that all those who oppose this monster store being imposed on our small rural town really do sit down and write to Winchester City Council.

'It is clear from Sainsbury's own figures that many shops on our High Street will shut down as the superstore simply hoovers up business that they absolutely cannot afford to lose. We hope the petition and the hundreds of letters already flooding in will be a clear signal to the city council that the plans are very strongly opposed.'

The petition will be presented in the form of a 60m scroll which will run down the Guildhall steps.

A Sainsbury's spokesman said: 'Whilst we are aware of significant opposition to the scheme, we are increasingly aware of significant support from within the local community.'