Delegated approval was secured on behalf of ALDI for a food store to anchor the east end of Fakenham town centre and regenerate a prominent local site within a Conservation Area setting.
The proposal involved the regeneration of a vacant former car dealership at an edge-of-centre location, and the delivery of a new ALDI food store offering 1,588 square metres of gross floor space, supported by an 88-space car park.
Extensive pre-application discussions were initiated with the LPA and Highway Authority so that the fundamental retail, design and highways matters could be agreed prior to the submission of the application. A community consultation exercise, conducted by our colleagues at Communications Potential, ensured that the support of council officers was complemented by overwhelming local support from local residents and businesses.
We helped to demonstrate that the introduction of an ALDI store to the east of the town centre would increase footfall in the immediate area, through linked trips and drawing more food shoppers into the town centre. Overall it was accepted that the proposal would result in a positive impact on the vitality and viability of Fakenham town centre.
The sensitive location of the site, within a Conservation Area, was also a key area of focus, with Planning Potential leading discussions to agree a scheme which secured local support, whilst reflecting the requirements of the client.
Through successful consultation and negotiation with key interested parties, no significant objections were submitted against the application. This allowed the LPA to issue a delegated planning approval without a Section 106 agreement, for what was a major local development.
Having secured the original consent, we have subsequently submitted applications to vary conditions to meet ALDI’s operational requirements.
Summary of achievements
- Coordination of pre-application discussions with the local planning authority
- Production of a detailed planning statement and retail impact assessment
- Coordination of planning application and submission
- Coordinating a community consultation exercise, issuing a consultation leaflet and meeting with key local stakeholders
- Secured overwhelming support from the local community prior to application
- Successfully rebutted competitor objections
- Project management of the consultant team
- Permission secured in October 2014
- Reducing restrictions placed on original consent to meet client’s requirements