Supermarket plan brings jobs pledge
A PLANNING application has been submitted for a multimillion-pound mixed-use development at Launceston, including a new Morrisons foodstore which the retailer says could provide 260 new jobs.
Development Securities and Wessex Investors (DSW), based in Plymouth, has submitted the detailed planning application to Cornwall Council for a foodstore, a Premier Inn, a Marston's family pub and 275 homes on a site off the town's Link Road.
More than 600 local people attended a two-day public consultation earlier this year in the Launceston Guildhall.
Of those who commented, 81 per cent supported the scheme, with only 6 per cent against.
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DSW said it had taken on board many of the comments and suggestions arising out of the consultation and wherever possible had incorporated them into the submitted planning application.
Deputy mayor Dave Gordon said the town council's planning committee would consider the scheme on October 11, but expressed doubts about the detail.
"The town has to grow, but I think there are too many houses and not enough employment opportunities in the plan," he said.
"There has to be support for the town centre, which is struggling. I welcome any jobs that Morrisons bring to the town but there has to be the infrastructure to go with it."
Paul Loft, a member of the chamber of commerce who has a sweetshop in the town, said traders were resigned to the fact that another superstore was coming, but Morrisons would do the least damage to the town centre because it sold fewer non-food items than its rivals.
He said the chamber would be talking to Morrisons' planning team to see what conditions could be put in place to help mitigate any effect on the town centre. "We'll try to work out something to lessen the impact of a further superstore," he said.
Andrew Pegg of DSW said: "We're hugely encouraged by the strength of local public opinion in favour of this mixed-use proposal.
"Local people recognise, as we do, that it will provide Launceston with a significant boost, particularly in these difficult economic times."
Morrisons development executive Robin Langford said: "We look forward to providing local people with one of our new concept stores which are being very well received wherever they have been developed across the country.
"Our store, with its 25,000sq ft sales area, will create real jobs with real career prospects for up to 260 local people, delivering a significant boost to the local economy."