Resolute action by Tachbrook Ward councillors has halted Sainsbury’s bid to turn the old library in Rampayne Street into a supermarket. Although a small number of people had welcomed this application many more were concerned at the prospect, concerns that were shared by the ward councillors.
Sainsbury’s intention had been to open from 7am to 11pm 364 days a year, so there would have been early morning deliveries and late night disturbance. Delivery vehicles would, at any time, have caused major problems, a fact acknowledged by the Council’s highway experts. There was a serious threat to local small retailers.
The proposal came before the Council’s Planning Committee on 10 December. Tachbrook Councillors Angela Harvey and Nick Evans attended so as to put the local view. The committee decided to refuse the planning application on grounds of both highway safety and residential amenity. It is of course possible that Sainsbury’s might appeal. In that case, the appeal will be fought with equal vigour. The Ward councillors would like to see the building remain in some form of community use, or else turned into housing.