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Yet another supermarket for Lancaster?

John Freeman
The Lancaster Guardian reports that plans for a new 24-hour supermarket off the A6 in Lancaster are being opposed by rival developers Centros and Booths.

The newspaper, on sale today, notes that developer Commercial Estates Projects hopes to attract a major supermarket to the greenfield site as part of a development which would also include a petrol station, a 50-bed hotel, a family-friendly pub and restaurant and a 500-space car park.

Booths, which has its own plans for a new 2,052 square metre store next door at Lawson’s Bridge, has lodged an objection, claiming the larger Commercial Estates plan – which sparked 33 objections from residents – would affect the vitality of Lancaster city centre.

Commercial Estates Group was established in 1989, which has offices in London, Harrogate and Carlyon Bay, Cornwall, utilises its management, investment, development and financial skills to add value to property assets throughout the UK.

Commercial Estates Group together with related entities, "The Group" is active in the office, industrial, retail, residential and mixed use sectors. Its UK portfolio extends throughout the country and has a capital value of about £682 million, rental income of £42.7 million and an estimated rental value of £56.3 million.

Its web site note describes it as "a rapidly developing business seeking to continue its growth by investing both in its existing projects and new acquisitions."

Centros, who are also objecting to the CES scheme, are continuing to discuss their own plans for a retail development centring on Lancaster's Edward Street Car park area and the Canal Corridor with the City Council. Their original plan, rejected by government, was opposed by a number of groups including It's Our City.

Last month, IOC reported that following the listing of the Mitchells Brewery malthouse, part of the area affected by the Centros scheme, they were dismayed to learn that the roof of the malthouse is now mostly missing, and has been open to the elements from at least 22nd November.

"This listed building is crucial to future conservation led development in this part of the city, and its deterioration would only serve the interests of developers Centros and owners Mitchell's Breweries," the group says. "We have contacted Lancaster City Council, asking them to ensure that Mitchell's deal with it and received a reply from Head of Plannning, Andrew Dobson, saying that Mitchell's have been told to deal with it or face formal action."

In addition to their headline story about the new supermarket plan for the A6, this week's Lancaster Guardian also features news on a £2 million refurbishment project for Lancaster and Morecambe town hall, along with other council properties such as Lancaster's Assembly Rooms (some tenants relocated to the Market this week while work took place); the jailing of a driver for causing a fatal collision; and Mayor-Elect Paul Woodruff's intention to attend civic functions by bike.

There's also a competition to win £500 of DIY goodies and a healthy looking jobs page, if you're on the look out for new employment.

• The Lancaster Guardian is on sale in all good local newsagents now.

Read the full story about the supermarket plan online on the Lancaster Guardian web site

Commercial Estates Project web site