Grantham councillors: ‘Tesco should need planning permission’

Councillor Ian Selby.

Councillor Ian Selby.

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Two councillors have demanded that a committee decides whether a Tesco Express should open on the site of a former pub in Grantham.

As reported in the Journal, the supermarket giant plans to open an Express store, the smallest in its portfolio, in what was The Cherry Tree pub, in Harrowby Lane.

Ian Selby, a Harrowby ward councillor for many years, has written to the chairman of the development control committee at South Kesteven District Council to express his “serious concerns”. These include a traffic increase and the impact on existing stores.

In the open letter, copied to the Journal, Coun Selby voiced his shock at planning law which allows a store to open in place of a pub without planning permission. He wrote: “Personally, I find it difficult to believe that this is NOT a significant change of use for this building.”

In a bid to gauge the opinions of local residents, Couns Selby and Bruce Wells planned to drop leaflets through neighbours’ doors this week asking them to voice their concerns.

Meanwhile, Coun Mark Ashberry, also a ward councillor, wrote to the Journal this week (see page 6). He branded the move without planning permission as “completely undemocratic” and said a Tesco Express would create a “detrimental impact” on the area.

Tesco was unavailable for comment.