A campaign to stop Tesco setting up a fourth store in the Lowestoft area has been dealt a severe blow.

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For more than a year Tesco has been working on its plans to turn the historic Tramway Hotel in London Road, Pakefield, into a Tesco Express.

Yesterday the Pakefield Opposed to Tesco (POT) campaign group received a massive setback after Waveney District Council said Tesco did not need planning permission for a change of use to convert the Tramway Hotel into a store.

The council had sought legal opinion to establish, in law, whether Tesco would need to submit a planning application for a change of use for the Tramway Hotel building.

Planning officials and POT had said an application would be required on the basis that the site is a business of mixed use – hotel and public house, while Tesco said it did not need to make a submission as it was only a pub.

But a barrister, who was asked to provide his legal opinion, has concluded “the overwhelmingly likely lawful use of the site is as a public house” and Tesco should not need to submit an application.

It means the council’s development control committee will not have a chance to vote against it.

But the committee will be able to vote at its next meeting in January on a submission for extensions to the Tramway to turn it into a retail store.

David Ritchie, Waveney District Council’s cabinet member for planning and coastal management, said: “We have a duty to explore and examine the potential outcomes of what is clearly a situation of great interest to the local community.

“We have sought independent legal opinion on this matter and, although this may be disappointing to members of the local community, the findings are clear.”

17 comments

  • People who support Tesco are suckers including councils

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    NorCas

    Thursday, December 19, 2013

  • If people don't like it then they don't have to use it, but I reckon most of 'em will, eventually. In the meantime it looks as if though common sense is, thankfully, going to rule the day.

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    peter waller

    Tuesday, December 17, 2013

  • I don't live too far away and I hope they do build one there especially after popping into spar and co-op to buy something then walking out in disgust at the massively inflated prices! Yes I know Tesco do as well but i regularly pop into Tesco express on Beccles Road and its no where near as expensive as the other two are! Spar put less than Tesco into local economy - they are an international chain. Co-op are now national. I can't help feeling like there is a hardcore group of NIMBY's moaning for the sake of it with pretty thin arguments getting all the attention and clouding out the fact that a lot ( i would dare to say more) people are happy to see one going there than not. As Peter said, if you don't like it, then don't use it, no ones forcing you too - but don't sit there trying to throw a spanner in the works for those that do. I thought this was a free country, where decisions are made fairly based on evidence, not by those who moan loudest and cause the most trouble.

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    ollie

    Wednesday, December 18, 2013

  • National chains put less money into the local economy than businesses from the area. Large supermarkets offer better value than smaller ones.

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    Capri

    Tuesday, December 17, 2013

  • Completely agree peter waller. I live in Pakefield and all I keep getting is junk through my door opposing tesco telling me to put posters in my window. In all honesty it made me get in touch with the council to say I'm all for it. If Tesco comes to Pakefield which I hope it does I think it will benefit the area and its only a Tesco express anyway so I don't see what all the fuss is about.

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    vinny.p

    Tuesday, December 17, 2013

  • If Tesco are so interested in pubs, why not take on the Morning Star in Kirkley?

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    jo

    Thursday, December 19, 2013

  • Tesco's interest was based on a point of law, which permits change of use to shops from pubs, so there is no need to consult etc and where there is such unnecessary ill feeling towards Tesco who can blame them for keeping a low profile. For the record, the bullies in this instance were most certainly not Tesco, who have done nothing wrong by wanting to open a store and preserve the future of an attractive building which is likely to have otherwise been lost and provide a service which most people want - hence why there are so successful.

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    Jay

    Thursday, December 19, 2013

  • Point du jour, of all the people that post you have, to be fair, always presented a very reasonable case. My issues are that whilst the average jo on the street will understandably not be aware of planning law, local councillors, MP's and others in more lofty positions really should and hence why it frustrates me so much to see the amount of time and energy they spend trying to retrospectively block a move by Tesco after the horse has bolted and with little regard to planning law or free enterprise. If we start trying to re-write the law by imposing sanctions on only certain food chains then I fear where this may lead us. Tesco, to be fair, could have sneaked through the back door on this, like so many of their competitors do, but they didn't and risked the backlash, some of which I still think is unnecessary. The Morning Star has gone to a food store operator but as it is not Tesco I doubt anyone will bat an eyelid. I'm not a Tesco representative by the way, just trying to add some balanced comment.

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    Jay

    Thursday, December 19, 2013

  • re pw there is a sucker born every minute

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    NorCas

    Tuesday, December 17, 2013

  • If you like a bit of horse shop at Tesco's

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    Jack

    Tuesday, December 17, 2013

  • Thankfully common sense prevailed. The argument against Tesco never really had any factual basis and relied on some vocal and influential people that just do not like Tesco putting pressure on the council to 'find' elaborate ways of blocking them. Is always a shame to lose a pub, but I feel the correct decision was made, in the end! Hopefully the locals will learn to use other pubs in the area or risk losing them as well.

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    Jay

    Wednesday, December 18, 2013

  • Sad to read so may comments that deny the views of hundreds of local residents who have stated that they are happy with the existing retail arrangements in Pakefield. Tesco will undermine the Spar and the Co-op - we'll probably lose the Post Office - Tesco don't do Post Offices! No more jobs will be created as the other stores will lose out, and there will be an increase in traffic -particularly the anti-social nerds who stop on double-yellow lines "just to pop in!" Given that Eric the Pie Pickles gave the impression that communities would have a say in local developments - we've been sold a pup! As for Ollie - I have been very impressed with the prices in both stores - and Tesco do not "give" anything to the local community - faceless and heartless - they haven't even bothered to host a meeting locally to explain their full intentions - perhaps then they could let us know what they are going to "give back!" This just exemplifies life in 2014 Britain - the bullies are in charge...

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    Dogberry

    Thursday, December 19, 2013

  • I wish I had Tescos clout,then WDC might agree I could turn my shop into housing.

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    kevin bacon

    Wednesday, December 18, 2013

  • I wonder which barrister was consulted. How was he or she chosen? Who recommended them?

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    point du jour

    Thursday, December 19, 2013

  • @Jay – I have been interested to read your comments on this subject in the past, and on more than one occasion my attempt to reply has been removed by the moderator – and no, there wasn't any bad language! I have attempted to explain that commercial organisations employ people to comment in the guise of a 'reasonable' local resident, in order to influence public opinion on contentious issues. No doubt my use of the expression commonly used to describe this practice caused the posting to disappear. Dogberry is right, the continued opposition to Tesco in Pakefield in spite of such a protracted campaign is as valid now as it was at the outset. The opposition to yet another Tesco on this site, which you describe as “unnecessary”, is a perfectly justifiable point of view of many local residents who do not want this store. The many posters still displayed in windows are proof of this – in spite of vinny.p's protestations. This is what local democracy is all about, although it looks likely to be undermined by WDC which understandably, but regrettably, is reluctant to embark on an expensive legal process with a multi-national corporation - as are most local authorities.

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    point du jour

    Thursday, December 19, 2013

  • Ollie, spot on. As well as high prices in the Co-op it really is a dreary shop. The shop that is most likely to suffer is probably Morrisons.

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    peter waller

    Wednesday, December 18, 2013

  • If Tesco are so interested in pubs, why not take on the Morning Star in Kirkley?

    Report this comment

    jo

    Thursday, December 19, 2013

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

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