Plans to build Tesco store in Silsden welcomed

Craven Herald: An artist’s impression of the proposed 20,000 sq ft medium- sized store which could be built in Keighley Road, Silsden An artist’s impression of the proposed 20,000 sq ft medium- sized store which could be built in Keighley Road, Silsden

Tesco has unveiled plans to build a new store in Silsden.

The proposed 20,000 sq ft medium-sized store, if allowed, will be built on a site in Keighley Road – to the east of Silsden AFC and close to where Aldi also hopes to build.

A public exhibition is due to be held on Wednesday at Silsden Methodist Church ahead of plans being submitted to Bradford Council later in the year.

Bradford councillor, Andrew Mallinson (Craven) welcomed the proposals which he said reflected planned growth for the area.

“This is good, positive news,” he said. “I’m astounded we’ve just had one site allocated for a supermarket, closely followed by another.”

Coun Mallinson said with the planned growth of Silsden, Steeton and Addingham, supermarket developers clearly recognised a need.

“There is a clear need to have good quality services on the doorstep,” he said.

The scheme is being brought forward by planning consultancy Nathaniel Lichfield and Partners (NLP) on behalf of the site owner, and has been discussed by Bradford Council officers for more than a year.

The site, formerly Becks Mill industrial buildings last occupied by Riverdale Publishing, has been empty for three years.

It is expected that the new Tesco, including a petrol station and parking, would create around 200 jobs, plus jobs during the construction phase.

Anthony Greally, senior associate director at NLP, said a Tesco store would satisfy the need for a large supermarket in Silsden.

“Current facilities in Silsden mainly comprise small-scale convenience stores which offer a limited range of goods and primarily meet the top-up shopping needs of residents,” he said.

“Silsden is currently lacking a main foodstore, with the largest being the Co-op on Bridge Street which comprises around 12,000 sq ft of net sales area.

“As a result, the majority of local residents currently travel out of the area to do their main food shopping in larger foodstores.

“There is a need for a new, larger foodstore to enable residents of Silsden to more fully meet their food shopping needs locally, retain spending in the area and reduce travel distances.”

Mr Greally added that the proposed Tesco would be larger than the proposed Aldi store, currently out to six-week public consultation.

“The proposed Aldi store would have a sales area comparable to the Co-op store and would carry a more limited range of products than the Tesco store would provide.

“Aldi carries between 1,250 to 1,500 product lines compared to a full-line foodstore, such as Tesco, which carries between 15,000 and 40,000 product lines.”

The NLP public exhibition will be open between 3pm and 8pm. If planning permission is granted, Tesco plans to start building later this year and open in 2015.

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