Morrisons rival Looe Tesco bid
The Cornish Guardian can reveal that Morrisons has expressed an interest in building a store in Looe.
The supermarket chain proposes to develop land at Polean, opposite the Milpool car park, in West Looe.
In a letter to Cornwall Council Robin Langford, development executive for the supermarket, said: "I can confirm that Morrisons wish to open a store in Looe. This site is in a suitable location and whilst there are some technical challenges we believe a store can be delivered."
Tomorrow Cornwall Council's Strategic Planning Committee is set to decide whether Tesco will be granted permission to build a store on land east of Barbican Road. The plans for the Tesco store, 36 new homes and a petrol station have received strong opposition from local residents and traders.
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Following the publication of a report by Grimley GVA, which was commissioned by Cornwall Council to assess the suitability of different sites in the town, Looe town council updated its recommendations for the Council to refuse planning permission.
However Cornwall Council's planning officers have recommended the plans for the Tesco store should be approved at tomorrow's meeting.
Mr Langford said: "I understand that the proposed application for the Tesco/Mercian Developments scheme has been recommended for approval and the officer's report has cast doubts on the deliverability of this site.
"This is disappointing given that we have made a genuine offer for the Polean site which is clearly the sequentially more preferable of the two opportunities in Looe."I feel it would be a mistake to grant consent for the Tesco proposal without allowing Morrisons and Cornwall Council the opportunity to bring forward this mutually beneficial scheme to strengthen the retail offer of Looe town centre."
A representative from Cornwall Council said: "The council has received interest in developing a supermarket on the site at Polean. The scheme would involve the provision of a new store for Jewsons alongside a new supermarket. Significant junction improvements would also be proposed to improve access into the site.
She added: "Any proposed development would be subject to planning permission."A report regarding the Morrisons bid will be presented to the council's cabinet for consideration at their meeting on February 13.
Morrisons has confirmed that if the plans for the Tesco store are approved, it will withdraw its offer.