Lidl drops planning application for Hamsey Green site

Lidl, the German supermarket chain, has dropped its planning application for what amounted to a vast steel shed to be built on a gateway site into Croydon from Surrey on the Limpsfield Road, to the south of Sanderstead.

Lidl has withdrawn its planning application, probably to come up with something more suitable than a big grey steel shed

Lidl has withdrawn its planning application, probably to come up with something more suitable than a big grey steel shed

The Lidl development was controversial because it involved the demolition of the landmark Good Companions pub and would occupy a key location in the south of the borough that is already well-served by supermarkets.

The “Goodies” is now no more than a pile of rubble, but Lidl’s initial design for a warehouse-style building on an already busy road junction that serves two nearby schools will not now be pursued.

Such has been the concern locally, with opposition to Lidl bringing together groups of parents from the schools, worried residents and traders and businesses, that a community association seems likely to be formed in the area.

But according to local councillor – and soon to be Mayor of Croydon – Yvette Hopley, Lidl’s withdrawal of its planning application is unlikely to be an end to the matter. It seems more likely to reflect the company realising that the first-draft design was not likely to get approval from Croydon Council’s planning process.

Last week, Lidl announced expansion plans for the British market, hoping to create 1,000 jobs. That was before horse meat was found in some of its beef products, however.

Lidl is understood to have paid £2 million to buy the Good Companions and the surrounding land, easily at the top end of prices expected in a depressed commercial property market.

“I am sure it won’t be too long before we receive a revised application for this site,” Hopley told Inside Croydon today.

“All residents’ concerns and points will be addressed through the usual council protocols when an application is received,” the councillor said.

Hopley said that council planning staff had taken residents’ and the council’s concerns about the proposed building to Lidl, most which centred on how “the building is out of character with the surrounding village scene”.

“Lidl made some minor changes to the frontage of the building and added some brickwork, but for the most part it was felt that this application wasn’t suitable for this landmark site. Officers determined the application within the statutory thirteen week period and felt that Lidl should come back with a more appropriate design for the site,” said the councillor.

Any new planning application will also see residents and businesses have to re-submit their objections if, indeed, they have similar reservations about the revised design.

The local residents’ group has a Facebook page here.

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About insidecroydon

News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
This entry was posted in Business, Community associations, Environment, Planning, Property, Pubs, Sanderstead, Yvette Hopley and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Lidl drops planning application for Hamsey Green site

  1. ndavies144 says:

    Aldi have been trying to get planning permission on Coulsdon’s Red Lion site since 2005; the site has stood empty for nine years now.

    The hot news broken by the Sadvertiser (http://www.thisiscroydontoday.co.uk/Aldi-hoping-build-store-Coulsdon-town-centre/story-17646937-detail/story.html) and slavishly copied by Develop Croydon http://www.developcroydon.com/news/3916/Aldi-eyes-Coulsdon-towncentre-store is ancient stuff.: I wonder who is spinning them.

    Given the opposition to the Lidl seems as vociferous as it has been to Aldi, and the glacial speed at which the Council works, the Goodlies site may well remain derelict way into the next decade.

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