Morrisons considers legal fight over Wadebridge plan
SUPERMARKET giant Morrisons says it will not give up on building a new store in Wadebridge and may be forced to do battle in the courts.
The retailer has urged Cornwall Council to reconsider its previous decision to approve Sainsbury’s application for a new store in the town in preference to Morrisons’.
It is calling for both applications to go back before the planning committee for a fresh decision to be made.
Morrisons has taken umbrage at the way in which the council’s strategic planning committee ruled in favour of its competitor in August, saying its plans would have brought many benefits to the Wadebridge community.
Wadebridge Football Club is the main loser as a result of the council’s decision.
It had struck a deal to sell Morrisons its land at Bodieve as the site for a new superstore, subject to planning approval being obtained, and in return new training pitches for the community to use would have been created.
Wadebridge and Egloshayle Guides were also hoping for a £10,000 handout to help to pay for the building of a new headquarters.
Morrisons also says Wadebridge School will lose the benefit of a safer access road because of the council’s decision to rule against its application and in favour of its rival’s plans.
Sainsbury’s wants to build a new store, complete with a filling station, on land that the council itself owns at Higher Trenant.
Mark Thompson, development executive at Morrisons, said his company wanted a fair deal from Cornwall Council and urged the authority to formally discuss both applications again.
“We were very disappointed by the strategic planning committee’s decision and the manner in which the applications were considered,” said Mr Thompson.
“We have requested that Cornwall Council take the Sainsbury’s and the Morrisons applications back to committee to be decided again as we feel this is the appropriate way for both schemes to be properly and fairly considered.”
However, Cornwall Council has insisted it dealt with the applications on their merits and says it is expecting to be able to give Sainsbury’s formal approval for building work to begin once conditions have been agreed.
A spokeswoman for the council said: “The council maintains that the application was decided properly and fairly and that a decision will now follow once all the usual procedures have been completed.”
Sainsbury’s told the Cornish Guardian it did not wish to comment at this stage.