Rival supermarket plans are going head-to-head as two of Holt’s biggest names disagree over what is best for the town’s shoppers.

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Historic independent school Gresham’s has this week revealed early details of its plan to develop a supermarket, shop and housing complex at the site of its pre-prep school by Market Place.

But established business Thaxters, which has a rival plan at its headquarters next to the bypass, has slammed the scheme and urged planners to reject it.

The coming days are set to be pivotal for the store wars clash.

On Tuesday, members of North Norfolk District Council’s development committee will visit the site of the proposed supermarket at Thaxters, submitted by Norwood Homes for an unnamed store firm.

The public exhibition for the plans submitted by Gresham’s School, including the superstore and other elements of the school’s 10-year development plan, is at St Andrew’s Parish Church hall on Friday January 11 from 5.30pm to 8pm and Saturday January 12 from 9am to 12 noon.

The school and its partner Endurance Estates of Cambridge is working with conservation architects Cowper Griffith, putting together what it calls “sympathetic and complementary” proposals to refurbish the historic building and develop the surrounding 2.5-acre site.

The plan includes moving the pre-prep school and converting the Old School House - used by Gresham’s since 1555 - and the surrounding land to include a restaurant, shops, homes, a public open space and a drinks kiosk.

A little further down Station Road, there would be a “small foodstore”, measuring 15,000sq ft, with car parking on the fringe of land beside the road and Pearson’s Road. The supermarket would be on the ground floor, with flats above.

Tim Holmes, director of Endurance Estates, said: “The site is so important to Holt and to Gresham’s, so the two main considerations for our proposals are to enhance what Holt has to offer residents and visitors and to enable Gresham’s to modernise and improve its educational facilities, both with sensitivity for the Holt community.”

Norwood Homes has hit back with a detailed rebuttal of the plans, saying: “The proposals do not meet local or national policy requirements for pedestrian provision, retention of existing public parking, public transport integration and land designated as open land.”

It added that traffic would increase on Station Road, that the development was located further away than the Thaxters plan from the residential development south of the bypass, and questioned road safety on Station Road, where there had been “numerous accidents, with the majority involving pedestrians”.

Members of Holt’s Chamber of Trade are concerned the threat of another supermarket will undermine the existing Budgens store and affect the viability of independent traders in the town. They are opposing both plans, though said the Gresham’s location was more favourable.

13 comments

  • The Thaxters site is a much better choice. The centre of Holt is already clogged up for most of the year and we don't need more cars in the centre. Surely the Chamber of Trade realise this?

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    samphirelover

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • Aldi on the Thaxter site for me! Helps the poor people and provides a much needed outlet for Holt. Aldi is very good for tools as well btw. And, BTW, when will these people ever understand that all Holt needs is PARKING SPACES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Report this comment

    windup

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • Chamber of Trade 'favours' the Gresham's site. If they're against both they shouldn't favour any! How many on the chamber have connections with Gresham's though - both the previous and current chair having their links.

    Report this comment

    Jeffrey Osborne

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • Money goes to Money - I predict that the School will win! Cross my palm with Silver

    Report this comment

    Farquarson-Smythe

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • Ex-inmate of the school here! Clearly a horrible idea dreamt up to make a pot of money. Are they desperate for cash with the economic downturn?

    Report this comment

    bookie

    Friday, January 4, 2013

  • You will have concluded Waitrose are going to be coming to Holt on Gresham's site, Overstrander, or does the scaremongering only work one way?

    Report this comment

    Jeffrey Osborne

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • Good point omnishambles. You can`t find a better source of cronyism and vested interests than those all too often seen in this part of Norfolk. Let`s "shake hands" on it, eh? Nudge, wink.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • "submitted by Norwood Homes for an unnamed store firm" Tesco's then.

    Report this comment

    Overstrander

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • If they are having the exhibition at the church it must all be rosy and cosy! So that's weddings and funerals next to a new supermarket and no more free parking for those events!

    Report this comment

    Jeffrey Osborne

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • Greshams, a boarding school that dates back to 1555 that owns half of Holt versus a local shed maker. Who do you think is going to win? No contest really is it. What Greshams wants, Greshams get.

    Report this comment

    BG

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • SURELY THERE ARE SUFFICIENT SHOPS AND A NICE SUPERMARKET ALREADY, PLANNERS DON'T LET THE GREEDY ONES WIN AGAIN AS IN OTHER SMALL TOWNS. IF IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT ANOTHER LARGE STORE IS TO BE BUILT THEN SURELY ON THE EDGE OF TOWN AT THAXTERS IS BEST, NOT RIGHT IN THE CENTRE. AS SOMEONE HAS SAID, MONEY WILL TELL

    Report this comment

    guardsman

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

  • Funny handshakes Rule OK.

    Report this comment

    Mad Brewer

    Friday, January 4, 2013

  • Will the church speak out against Gresham's plans or will they keep quiet if they have the new extension...

    Report this comment

    Jeffrey Osborne

    Thursday, January 3, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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