Unanimous approval has been given by South Kesteven District Council’s development control committee to construct a new food store in the centre of Long Bennington.
Several residents spoke against the proposals during the meeting, expressing concerns including proximity to a neighbouring home, traffic safety and congestion, as well as challenging the need for another convenience store.
However unanimous approval was given to construct the Lincolnshire Co-operative along with a new access road, car park and service yard subject to conditions, with amendments made to the condition regarding deliveries.
A detailed delivery plan will have to be submitted for further approval before building can commence.
An amendment was also put forward to reduce the proposed opening times of 7am to 10pm to an earlier closing time after this was questioned by residents, but this was rejected by the majority of the committee.
Prior to the meeting a petition opposing the plans had received 387 signatures, while SKDC had also received thirteen letters of objection and eight in support.
The site on Main Road, Long Bennington is currently occupied by a 1950’s red brick house, former petrol filling station and workshop, the demolition of which has now been approved to make way for the development.
District and parish councillor Paul Wood spoke in favour of the plans and said: “It is an eyesore in the village and has been an eyesore for a long while. It is long overdue for development.
Coun Wood added: “I think a small supermarket would be beneficial to the village.”
Amongst the speakers against was Steve Hampson, whose 72-year-old father is the closest resident to the development and expressed worries about HGVs in the service yard, the opening hours, and the potential of anti-social behaviour.
Meanwhile traffic concerns were raised by many members of the public, including Long Bennington resident and co-owner of Potts store and post office Terry Forrester, who said: “It is a backward step for Long Bennington, taking it away from being a rural village.”
For further coverage on the decision see Friday’s Journal.