Planners have been urged to consider two supermarket applications for Silsden at the same time – even though one has yet to be submitted.
Aldi’s application to build on Keighley Road is due to go before Bradford Council’s Regulatory and Appeals Panel next Thursday, March 13.
Meanwhile, an application for a Tesco store, by Silvermantle, owner of the former Becks Mill site also on Keighley Road, is due to be submitted any time now.
Now, Silvermantle has appealed to the council to delay a decision on Aldi so it can consider both schemes at the same time.
A spokesman for the council confirmed a request had been received and that it would be up to members of the committee on the day to decide what route to take.
Nathaniel Lichfield and Partners, agents for Silvermantle, said a survey of residents and businesses in Silsden revealed that 60 per cent of the 616 responses fully supported the need for improved foodstore facilities, with almost two thirds preferring Tesco over Aldi.
“We really do urge Bradford Council to determine both the Aldi and Silvermantle applications at the same time,” said Anthony Greally, senior associate director for NLP.
“If the council feels it can only support one store, it is important that it is the right one for Silsden, in terms of meeting people’s shopping needs in full and reducing the need to travel out of Silsden for main food shopping.”
But Aldi, which says its plans has received more than a 100 letters of support to the council, said it was not surprised by Silvermantle’s request for a deferment.
“However, we do have an expectation that officers will present members with sufficient information which, combined with the positive feedback received from the community, will give members the confidence to make an informed decision,” a spokesman said.
“Many local residents who responded to our consultation have been quick to point out they would prefer our store to a larger Tesco supermarket. “We believe our modestly sized store would complement existing businesses and help to keep residents shopping locally.”
Silvermantle is also proposing to hand over some of its land to the Silsden Community Sporting Facility including all weather pitches and an overspill car park.
Mr Greally added: “We have received positive feedback from members of the Silsden community and there are considerable benefits that Silvermantle’s scheme would bring to the area. “As well as providing a full line foodstore and benefiting Silsden AFC, the scheme would create around 200 new jobs and result in a long-standing vacant site being brought back into use.”