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Home Bargains to fight for their place in Gloucester

By citizenmike  |  Posted: April 11, 2014

By Mike Wilkinson, Public Affairs reporter

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Home Bargains want to open at the Peel Centre

Comments (3)

DEVELOPERS are appealing the decision to refuse plans for a new Home Bargains store, which was described by councillors as a ‘Trojan horse’.

Peel Outlets, owner of Gloucester Quays, are ‘dismayed’ by Gloucester City Council’s decision to throw out their plan that would pave the way for a new home lifestyle store at the Peel Centre.

Councillors feared that granting permission could open the floodgates to other out-of-city-centre shops which could have opened at the proposed King’s Quarter project.

But Peel are arguing that the opening of The Range, in Eastern Avenue, and the granting of permission for a new Aldi in Bristol Road, is a clear sign that their own plans should be rubber-stamped.

They are now appealing to the Secretary of State to overturn the planning committee’s decision to throw out the change of use plans which would have allowed the sale of food and drink, toys and toiletries.

A Home Bargains boss has said that his firm would invest £1million, create 60 permanent jobs and that they had been searching for suitable premises in the city for four years without success.

Joe Morris, operations director of Home Bargains, said: “It is hugely disappointing to be refused permission at the Peel Centre. We followed officers’ previous advice and moved our attention to the most centrally located, viable and available unit in the city.

“We do not know what more we can do and in the absence of any suitable units within the city centre itself, we have to question whether to take our investment elsewhere. Residents are currently deprived of genuine retail choice and important job opportunities have also been lost.”

Mark Whittaker, Peel’s property director, added: “We support the proposed King’s Quarter retail development aspirations. What we find difficult to comprehend is that a future potential fashion retail scheme is used as a reason to prevent other retail proposals in Gloucester, at a time when there is an overriding need to provide new retailing in Gloucester to prevent shoppers driving to other towns such as Cheltenham.

“It is utterly baffling to be told that the occupier should wait to see what is available in King’s Quarter, at the same time as councillors make it clear they don’t want that retailer in King’s Quarter.”

Home Bargains have been able to open stores on retail parks in Cheltenham and Hereford without planning difficulties.

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3 comments

  • jas37  |  April 11 2014, 10:00PM

    I follow local Planning matters very closely and I can't understand how this application was ever refused. The mention of a potential detrimental affect on the King's Quarter development was clearly a Red Herring and Home Bargains are clearly not a suitable tenant for the M&S building in Westgate street. Personally I would have preferred to see The Range open up at the Peel centre but Home Bargains must surely be allowed to open there.

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  • dogs_life  |  April 11 2014, 6:41PM

    Personally I would say that the redevelopment of the market to make way for TK Maxx is a greater threat to the Kings Quarter than Home Bargains moving to the Peel Center. Yet the council is still pushing forward with this plan, why can't TK Maxx not wait until the Kings Quarter is ready and open a shop there? As a pervious poster has said, there is something fishy going on with the planning department at the moment which will hopefully soon be exposed. Good luck to Home Bargains on the appeal, I personally look forward to shopping in your Peel Center store very soon.

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  • Richardburton  |  April 11 2014, 6:39PM

    So there are not wanted in the four quaters... That's fine as they want to go in the area where Burger king are so what is the problem? They will bring jobs with them.. That's all i need to know some people do need a job i hope they have more Full time than Part time! Should have given address to write in support of this application.

    |   14

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