New rural town developers row over superstore
The developers of Cranbrook have objected to a new Morrisons supermarket being built on the edge of Exeter.
The East Devon Community Partners, representing Hallam Land Management, Taylor Wimpey and Persimmon, claim that having a new supermarket at Middlemoor would have an adverse effect on trade in the new town centre. They say it would be better if Morrisons was built at Cranbrook.
The partners have made their views known in a long letter to Exeter's planning officers, stating: "Were the Middlemoor proposal to proceed, the delivery of the Cranbrook town centre would undoubtedly be pushed further back in time, and the delivery of the supermarket at all and the whole delivery of a range of uses within the town centre would be threatened."
They add: "The delivery of Cranbrook town centre has reached a key stage and the timing of the Middlemoor proposal is therefore particularly unfortunate."
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Cranbrook resident Abigail Meeke said: "I don't think our store in Cranbrook is going to be built for years. In any case there is already Sainsbury's and Tesco if we want to go to a big supermarket, so having Morrisons would not make any difference.
"From how they have described the store we are going to have in Cranbrook it sounds as if I would have to travel to a larger store to do my weekly shop anyway, but I would also shop in Cranbrook's store if I ran out of milk or sugar." Devon County Council, as the highways authority, has also voiced concerns about the proposed entrance to the new Morrisons petrol station, fearing traffic could queue back on to the main road.
A spokesman for Morrisons said: "Through our ongoing discussions with the council, we are working collaboratively to bring forward the best and most appropriate scheme for this site."