Lidl spokesman speaks of disappointment after planning application in Heacham is rejected

The proposed Lidl store at Heacham.

The proposed Lidl store at Heacham. - Credit: Archant

Councillors rejected an application for a supermarket on the outskirts of a west Norfolk village after voting against recommendations from officials.

Proposals for a Lidl in Heacham, on the former RJ Stainsby and Son's garage along the A149, were backed by many local residents.

But the plans were thrown out at a planning committee meeting yesterday amid traffic and design concerns.

The decision was deferred in May for a representative from Norfolk County Council's highways department to be present.

Liz Poole, acting principal engineer major development at NCC, said the proposed right hand turn lane to access the supermarket was 'by far the best form of access to this site'.

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But councillor Toby Wing-Pentelow said at yesterday's meeting the site could become an 'accident black spot'.

Members voted eight to six against the plans, in spite of a warning from a council official that the arguments might not stand up in a subsequent appeal.

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Councillor Andrew Morrison said they had a 'huge amount of responsibility' not to create a 'blot on the landscape'. He added he envisaged a 'corridor of clutter' along the A149 if they allowed this development and similar ones to go ahead.

Councillor Avril Wright said: 'I don't think we should accept something that on this piece of paper to me looks like an army barracks.'

However, Hunstanton holiday home owner Catherine Saunders said Lidl was 'badly' needed and would take the pressure off supermarkets in Hunstanton.

A Lidl spokesman said they were 'disappointed' the application was not granted despite 'overwhelming' public backing and support from statutory consultees.

She added they would review their options to find an appropriate solution.

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