Tesco in line for rejection

CAMPAIGNERS are on the verge of success in their attempts to block plans for another Tesco Express in the southwest of Sheffield.

Protests over an application to redevelop the site of a former garage off Ecclesall Road South at Parkhead have seen two petitions with a total of more than 3,100 names, in addition to 150 letters of objection.

Now city planners have decided that the proposed supermarket fails to provide adequate off-street car parking for customers and would cause too much noise and other disturbance to neighbours.

Councillors are expected to accept their recommendation on Monday. If permission is refused, Tesco has the option of appealing to the Secretary of State.

The company is trying for the second time to secure approval for a site opposite Parkhead Crescent, changing the layout and delivery arrangements in an attempt to overcome objections.

But, once again, it has run into a barrage of protests. Many relate to concerns about worsening traffic congestion, especially with the coming and going of lorries.

“This is a very busy part of Ecclesall Road South with two takeaways, a pub, shops, bus stop, cricket pitch, nursery, health spa and access road, and the food store would make this much worse,” says one critic.

Another says: “The existing Red convenience store across the road provides a good service and it is likely that this would have to close because of competition from Tesco, which would also mean the loss of the Post Office within.”

One objector adds: “Another Tesco, so close to the one in Abbeydale Road, is not needed.”

Planners accept some of Tesco’s arguments. They agree with the “broad principle” of the scheme, and the design and scale is also acceptable.

But this is outweighed by the concerns over traffic and noise.

“The car parking provision and layout would not meet the anticipated demand, which would result in conflict within the site and increased pressure on street parking,” says a report to councillors.

“The servicing arrangements are so restricted that vehicles would be likely to cause an obstruction to the free flow of traffic, conflict at the site access and prevent drivers from safe levels of visibility.”

The report adds: “There would be an unacceptable level of noise and disturbance associated with store activities, particularly early in the morning and late at night, which would have an unacceptably harmful impact on immediate neighbours.”