New supermarket to be built in Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Moreton-in-Marsh

Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard: New supermarket to be built in Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Moreton-in-Marsh New supermarket to be built in Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Moreton-in-Marsh

A SECTION of land within the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, close to the entrance of Moreton-in-Marsh, could be home to a new supermarket.

A decision was made by members of Cotswold District Council’s planning committee to approve a food store and car park on land next to the A429 road.

Prior to the meeting, the development was met with largely negative reactions. CDC received 155 letters of objection, one letter of support and one letter making a general observation.

One of the comments read: “This will concrete over a large part of the site which will be an irreplaceable loss from a special landscape.”

Several letters pointed to the notion that a large supermarket would detract business from the many independent stores in Moreton town centre.

Speaking at the meeting, Cllr Robert Dutton said: “Now is the opportunity to refuse the application. I don’t think that approving this would be a good idea.”

Bourton-on-the-Hill Parish Council objected to the development. A spokesman said: “Moreton High Street needs to be protected from an out-of-town urban development, which is unsuitable for Cotswold market town in an AONB.”

A unanimous vote in favour of the build was cast with only one member of the planning committee voting against Speaking about the prospective supermarket, a CDC spokesman said: “There is currently no designated end user for the site. Planning permission is granted for the use of the land and not on the basis of who the applicant is.

“We don’t therefore refuse or grant an application because it is Sainsbury’s, Waitrose or Tesco for example.”

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