2,000 backed superstore plan

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More than 2000 people signed up to back a proposal for a Tesco store at Buncrana Road, the retail giant has said.

The signatures were passed on to the Northern Ireland Planning Service along with market research which found that more than 90% of respondents questioned in the Templemore area were in favour of the development.

However, Derry City Council’s deferral this week of a discussion on the planning application to build the store has effectively ended the long running bid to build the supermarket.

Planning Minister, Alex Attwood, stated last November that he was minded to refuse the planning application but said he would listen to the views of the council. However, Tesco says the proposal has “fallen at the last hurdle” after the planned discussion on the matter was deferred by council for a second time. The company says the city has “lost out” on millions of pounds of investment and around 200 retail jobs.

The company confirmed that results from two consultations on the proposals revealed that 90% of respondents were in favour of Tesco coming to Buncrana Road (data from stand visitors at Templemore) and 82% of respondents were in favour of Tesco coming to Buncrana Road (data from Strand Road store). More than 2,000 signatures of support for the proposals were collected and passed on to Planning Service, the company said. Gloria Coats, corporate affairs manager for Tesco said, the council’s in action was “very disappointing”. “We have consulted extensively with local residents, political representatives, statutory departments and other interested parties. As a result of feedback from these meetings a number of significant revisions and concessions were made and we continued to work with all those involved. We have held public exhibitions, circulated leaflets and conducted petitions, all of which have resulted in huge public support.”