Decision day for store

PLANS to bring a supermarket to land at Pathhead Farm, Kirriemuir, have been recommended for refusal (writes Sarah McLean).

In a report due to be discussed on February 1, Eric Lowson, director of Infrastructure Services, has suggested that the application by Guild Homes (Tayside) Ltd is dismissed.

The site would be located in an area which is currently in agricultural use and is around 3.2 hectares in size.

In the retail statement as part of the supporting information, the applicant identifies the catchment area as Kirriemuir, Alyth and Old Rattray, Blairgowrie, Coupar Angus, Meigle, Rattray, Glenshee, Rosemount and Westfield and Dean.

Mr Lowson said: “A gross floorspace of 3995 square metres is indicated with a projected total turnover of £18.3m. “

The applicant has also submitted a sustainability statement which suggests that the development would make the town more self sufficient and therefore more sustainable.

A total of 1,132 letters of support were received by Angus Council regarding the site and 76 objecting to the development.

The points in support include the need of a supermarket in the town, the site is safe for access and parking and it is the best site for a modern supermarket in the town. Meanwhile the points of objection include an insufficient retail capacity for the proposed supermarket, there could be better sites available, a need to protect the town centre, inaccessibility to those in the town without a car and access and traffic issues.

In his conclusion of the report Mr Lowson gives his reasons for suggesting refusal.

He said: “The proposed development would, when considered in conjunction with other developments or with extant planning permission, have an unacceptable impact on the vitality and viability of Kirriemuir and other Angus town centres.

“The site is located out of town and there is an available and suitable edge of centre site capable of accommodating large scale retail development.

“The local road network cannot accommodate it.

“The application would result in the permanent loss of prime agricultural land.

He added: “It has not been demonstrated that there is a proven public interest and overriding need for the development which cannot be met within the development boundary.”