Supermarket extension decision made today

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THE APPLICATION to extend a supermarket and its car park, as well as creating 40 new full and part time jobs in Pocklington, will be put before planners today.

Sainsbury’s are looking to build an extra 5,000 sq ft of sales space at The Balk store, and lay an additional 31 parking bays by taking over the abandoned gas works next to the site.

A second application is to demolish an existing building on the gas works. The supermarket giant first announced their intention to expand in 2009, but contamination found under the gas works site delayed the project.

Work has been carried out to clear the old site of tars and oils that had seeped into the ground water.

The rest of the work will be completed if planners at East Riding Council give the applications the go-ahead today.

The scheme has been given the support of Pocklington Town Council, while six letters of support were submitted by local residents to strengthen their case.

However, a number of concerns have been raised by five local residents who questioned the need for an enlarged store and felt it would impact on local independent traders.

Despite this, the planning officer has recommended that both applications be given the green light.

The report reads: “ Whilst the enlarged store may result in some diversion of convenience goods trade away from other established stories in these centres, this would be minor at worst and this diversion will not harm the vitality and viability of either Pocklington or Market Weighton town centres and any adverse impacts would be offset by the positive benefits of the proposals in terms of regeneration, employment and improved customer choice and competition.”

Sainsbury’s first announced in 2009 that they would look to expand the store, which is one of the smallest of its kind in the country, to give customers a greater choice.