Way open for fifth superstore to move into town
BODMIN is set to see yet another superstore opening with speculation that German discounter Aldi may be moving into town.
With Lidl announcing last month that it had purchased the current police station site off Priory Road, residents may soon have the choice of five superstores in which to shop.
The site of the new store is expected to be off Dunmere Road, on land owned by Henry Boot Developments.
The company has applied to North Cornwall District Council to change the conditions of a planning application already granted to allow a discount foodstore to be built there.
Although Aldi was guarded this week on whether it intended ot move onto the site, the company has shown recent interest in coming to Bodmin.
The Cornish Guardian understands Aldi entered a bidding war for the police station site, but lost out to Lidl.
A spokesman for Henry Boot Developments confirmed this week that it already has a client interested in moving onto the Dunmere site, but the deal was yet to be finalised.
An Aldi spokeswoman said: "At present we are not in conversation with Henry Boot,'' but she added the company would keep the local media updated on any developments.
Last week Aldi pulled the plug on a year-long planning application to open a store in Liskeard, saying it was no longer interested in operating from the town.
Bodmin mayor Bob Micek felt a new store at the western side of the town could bring benefits.
"The town is growing, and facilities like this are limited in that area.
"Also, when I speak to people in our present supermarkets, many have travelled some distance to come to Bodmin, so I can see some advantages.
"There is also the regeneration of the old St Lawrence's Hospital site for employment and residential, and the new store may benefit that area, so I don't think we should dismiss it out of hand,'' said Cllr Micek.
Bodmin and District Chamber of Commerce chairman Chris Wilkes said while he could see the benefits of Lidl occupying the police station site, he had mixed feelings about another discount superstore setting up shop off Dunmere Road.
"I think the jury is still out on a foodstore moving to that site. There will be implications for both town centre traders and there are the obvious traffic issues, and it will be something we need to discuss in detail as a chamber.
"I have already met with Lidl and I told them they shouldn't only look at how the town would benefit them, but how they could benefit Bodmin, in particular by linking with the town centre, and I must admit, as a company I couldn't find fault with anything they were suggesting.''