Traders face new blow in fight to stop store

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CONTROVERSIAL plans for a new supermarket in South Yorkshire are set to get the go-ahead, despite strong objections from local traders.

Small business owners in Mexborough have previously called on Doncaster Council to refuse consent for Tesco’s application to convert a former carpet warehouse near the town’s railway station into a supermarket and petrol station.

However, their campaign proved fruitless and councillors said at a meeting last month that they were prepared to grant planning permission for the store.

Now the outline plans have to go before Rotherham Council as around a quarter of the site lies within its boundaries.

Members have been advised to approve the plans, meaning that the development can go ahead, at a committee meeting next Thursday, May 17.

In the report set to go before that meeting, town planners say: “The principle of development has been considered acceptable by Doncaster Council, which represents the principal area of the site.

“It is not considered that the proposed development would have a significant adverse impact on Mexborough town centre.

“The proposal is also considered to have no adverse impact on existing, committed and planned public or private investment in any existing centre.”

This comes after a Save the High Street protest group was formed in Mexborough to oppose the scheme.

In a survey carried out by that group, 92 out of 115 businesses said they objected to the development.

The campaign to stop the supermarket proposal was also supported by the South Yorkshire Branch of the Federation of Small Businesses.

Sheffield-based chairman Andrew Flower said: “By far the most dangerous threat to the future of the retail trade is the proliferation of the ‘big four’ supermarkets.”

Rotherham Council’s planning board meeting will be held at 10am at Rotherham Town Hall.