North Devon and Torridge commission supermarket and retail space analysis

31 Oct

North Devon Council and Torridge District Council have commissioned a survey of how much extra supermarket and retail space is needed in the area in the foreseeable future.  Details here.

It shows that the area currently needs only 3,972sq m of supermarket space over the next 20 years (for comparison, the new Tesco in Seaton is 6,000 sq m). Torridge needs only 464 sq m of such space.  The newspaper article goes on to say that the results could have a major bearing on two planning applications for a 2,787sq m Morrisons store on the Evans Transport site and a 6,820sq m Asda store at Anchorwood Bank, both in Barnstaple.  They could also hold some sway over on-going talks between NDC and Tesco about a supermarket in South Molton’s Central Car Park area.

Now, wouldn’t it be a good idea if our district council did something similar.  But what did it actually do?  It sent half a dozen of its councillors to local towns and asked them to report on how they found them in terms of “shopping experience”.  Now, I don’t know about you but some of our councillors strike me as pate de fois gras shoppers and others strike me as “I’ll have those manky looking apples at the back please” shoppers!  This is no substitute for hard EVIDENCE.

But we all know what EDDC thinks of evidence.  As has been said before here:  if they like it, it is evidence; if they don’t like it, it’s opinion – even when it comes from experts.  Remember two consultants (Atkins and Tym) came to pretty much the same idea about how much extra industrial land was needed in East Devon – not very much.  But EDDC preferred to go with its East Devon Business Forum friends who want LOTS and LOTS.  There can’t be enough for them and coincidentally several of them own vast tracts of current and potential industrial land.  Now that’s evidence!

2 Responses to “North Devon and Torridge commission supermarket and retail space analysis”

  1. Alan Weaver October 31, 2012 at 3:14 pm #

    Hear Hear. I would ask whoever wrote this to send a copy to Hugo Swire MP.

  2. Mr Spleen November 7, 2012 at 11:35 pm #

    The SIN is providing a brilliant piece of on-going analysis of the deeply flawed Local Plan process: it is this sort of real evidence which objectors can use to shoot down the dangerous nonsense eminating from EDDC.
    Well done: keep it up!

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