Sheringham store decision further delay

Richard BatsonA crucial decision to resolve Sheringham's long-running store wars saga has been postponed again - because of new government planning policies.Rival plans by Tesco, which has been seeking a Cromer Road store for more than decade, and a newer scheme by landowner Clive Hay-Smith whose Greenhouse Project store on the Weybourne Road would be run by Waitrose, were expected to go before a council committee later this month.Richard Batson

A crucial decision to resolve Sheringham's long-running store wars saga has been postponed again - because of new government planning policies.

Rival plans by Tesco, which has been seeking a Cromer Road store for more than decade, and a newer scheme by landowner Clive Hay-Smith whose Greenhouse Project store on the Weybourne Road would be run by Waitrose, were expected to go before a council committee later this month.

But the timetable has been derailed by the recent announcement of 19 new planning policies - which officers need to study in depth to see how they affect the supermarket plans.

It is now hoped to reschedule a meeting in February to resolve an issue which has dominated and divided the town for years.


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Planning Policy Statement 4 aims to 'deliver more sustainable patterns of development, reduce the need to travel, especially by car and respond to climate change', and promote 'the vitality and viability of town and other centres as important places for communities'.

It will replace a previous 'needs test' with a tougher one looking at the impact of proposals on a range of areas including the effect on the high street, choice, consumer spending, jobs and climate change.

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North Norfolk District Council said all those involved needed to see if, and how, the new policies, backed up by a 100-page guidance document, affected the supermarket applications.

Head of planning and building control Steve Oxenham said: 'We know these decisions are hugely important to the community of Sheringham, and we want to bring this to a conclusion as soon as possible. The timing of these new government policies is unfortunate, but we will work as quickly as we can to gather all the information we need, hopefully in time for a February meeting.'

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