Caravan club add voice to store ‘no’s

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The Camping and Caravan Club of Great Britain is objecting to plans for a new edge-of-town supermarket in Jedburgh.

A planning application for a new store on the former site of the Oregon Timber Frames factory in the town’s Station Yard, off Edinburgh Road, was submitted last year and will come before Scottish Borders Council’s planning committee on Monday.

The bid from Sheppy Industries Ltd has proved controversial, with almost equal levels of support and opposition – the former includes many residents desperate for Jedburgh to have a new supermarket, while the latter includes local traders anxious about the potential impact on their businesses.

For its part, the Camping and Caravan Club says the new 1,300sqm-store – which is recommended for refusal by planners – would have an adverse impact on its nearby site through increased noise and light pollution, while the additional extra traffic that would be generated around the entrance to the park would create a hazard.

In August, a second, separate application for the same site, but for a bigger store development, was also lodged with the local authority.

Local Scottish Borders councillor Len Wyse has always been in favour of the proposals for the smaller of the two applications – he feels the bigger proposed development would be “overkill” for Jedburgh.

“The site is zoned for industrial use but, as far as worries on the employment front over the loss of such land are concerned, firms are hardly queueing up to open premises in Jedburgh,” he told TheSouthern.

“A store like this, however, would bring a good mix of full and part-time jobs. I know the traders are against it, but on the other hand, I am always being asked when Jedburgh is going to get a new supermarket.”

However, Councillor Wyse does not think the smaller proposed store will be large enough to halt the flow of Jedburgh residents to the Tesco and Asda supermarkets in Galashiels.

“But I think quite a few of those people wil now switch to the new Sainsbury’s in Kelso as it’s only 10 minutes away,” he added. Asked at this stage if he had any inkling about a possible tenant for the development, if it did get the go-ahead, Councillor Wyse said there had been unconfirmed reports that Tesco had expressed an interest.