Lidl Appeal dismissed
30/05/2014 07:54:00......Posted by Tim Pollard
Some good news for most Sanderstead and Hamsey Green residents: the appeal by Lidl against Croydon Council's decision not to grant planning permission for the proposed Lidl store on the Good Companions site has been dismissed. This means that the scheme in its current form cannot go ahead.
Residents and councillors noted at the time that the appeal was conducted in a very fair way and the Inpsector seemed to have an open mind to the arguments. In his decision he confirms the Planning committee's view that adding in another junction in such a congested area would be detrimental to road safety and was not justifiable.
Here is the critical paragraph from his report:
'I appreciate that in urban areas drivers frequently encounter situations such as accesses close together with limited space or adjoining a bus stop, and that such situations can, in practice, often be operated acceptably. However, the introduction of such features into a new development would, to my mind, require considerable justification. I consider the accumulation of additional risks to highway and pedestrian safety that would arise from this proposal, in view of the volume of traffic likely to use the proposed access; the volume of unsupervised schoolchildren having to cross the access when the schools in Tithepit Shaw Lane empty; and the potential for vehicular conflict arising from inadequate access/egress provision for large service vehicles and from the possibility of confusion and misunderstanding between users of the new access and those of the adjacent service road and other accesses; would be unacceptable. It would not be outweighed by the benefits of the proposed development in terms of its otherwise sustainable location, opportunity for employment, and increased retail competition and customer choice.'
You can read the whole decision here.
Needless to say the ward team are delighted by this news and would like to thank the councillors for Warlingham (Surrey CC's Cllr David Hodge and Tandridge's Cllr David Cooley) and the many residents who provided such constructive opposition to this ill-thought-through scheme. Particlar credit goes to Cllr Lynne Hale, who did a sterling job in convincing the Planning Committee that this scheme should be refused.
It will be interesting to see where Lidl go from here. Given the reasons for refusal, it is hard to see that they can reconfigure their scheme to get around the problem, but as they have invested large sums in the land we presume they are not going to give up just yet.