Wadebridge's Sainsbury's store build will 'start shortly'
WORK on constructing the new multi-million-pound Sainsbury's supermarket in Wadebridge will finally begin in the next few months.
It is expected around 200 jobs will be created when the store opens later this year.
Planning permission was granted two and a half years ago, in August 2011, for a store at Higher Trenant, though the chain had first shown an interest in coming to Wadebridge back in 2009.
Sainsbury's went head to head with Morrisons in a battle for consent to move into Wadebridge.
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Cornwall Council considered both applications at a planning meeting in St Austell, preferring Sainsbury's application over Morrisons' bid to build at Wadebridge FC's Bodieve Park ground.
Sainsbury's said yesterday it expected to begin building its new supermarket and filling station very shortly.
Project manager Marina Blythe said: "I'm pleased to confirm that we're working on the final details of the construction plan for our new store in Wadebridge and plan to be on site in the next few months commencing the build of the new store."
Sainsbury's will bring the number of large supermarkets in the town to four, and mayor Tony Rush said it was hard to predict the effect on town-centre trade.
"It's a fact of life that people will go to Sainsbury's when it opens just to see what it's like, and being close to the bypass the store may affect the town centre, particularly in the summer," he said. "People from places such as St Kew and Delabole tend to come and shop in Wadebridge.
"On the other hand, I know people from the town who go to Bodmin to shop in some of the supermarkets there, but I'm sure our town centre will survive.
"I do think a new filling station will be a good thing for Wadebridge because we only have the one, whereas in the past we had quite a few in the town."
Wadebridge and District Chamber of Commerce chairman Adrian Jones said he was worried about the future viability of town-centre trade with another supermarket on the town's outskirts.
"Out-of-town supermarkets are a real threat to town centres like ours and four is simply too many," said Mr Jones.
"We have several shops closing here at the moment, and we face a real challenge not only from supermarkets, but from internet shopping. It's something we need to mitigate, and I feel it's the chamber of commerce which has to look seriously at ways of addressing it."