Store wars as Tesco and Morrisons line up to fight off new Lidl

Store wars in Gorleston as Tesco and Morrisons fight new Lidl plan

Rival supermarkets are hoping to fight off plans for a new Lidl at Links Road in Gorleston where 500 houses are also planned. Pictures: Teri Pengilley, James Bass, Google Maps. - Credit: Teri Pengilley, James Bass, Google Maps.

Two supermarket giants have set out their opposition to a new Lidl store, part of a 500-home development planned for Gorleston.

The joint scheme being put forward by the discount retailer and Norfolk County Council would also see a care home on land the council owns south of Links Road, near Beacon Park.

Opposition builds to Lidl off A47 Gorleston

Graham Dunhill, Phil Smith, Marion Oliver, and John Plaskett fear the impact of 500 homes and a Lidl store on their community around Links Road and Warren Road on the fringes of Gorleston and Hopton. - Credit: Liz Coates

People living nearby  have already signalled their strong opposition saying they fear "traffic chaos", "urban sprawl", and tagging it "an absolute disgrace".

Now Tesco and Morrisons have added their voices saying the supermarket element will drain away trade from existing shops and even put them at risk.

A letter from Morrisons states the proposed Lidl store would have a significantly adverse impact on the underperforming Morrisons store in Gorleston town centre, which is described "weak and vulnerable to trade diversion".

It also says it would also have an adverse impact on the Morrisons store in Bradwell, which is not recognised in the Lidl retail impact assessment.

Morrisons, Gorleston. Photo: Andy Darnell

Morrisons, in Gorleston, has lodged objections to a new Lidl saying it would have a severe impact on its Gorleston store. - Credit: Archant © 2008

Overall it says Lidl has underestimated the impact on Gorleston which it says would see a 7.5pc reduction in turnover.

Morrisons says the figure is more likely to be 15pc for its Gorleston store, 8pc for Bradwell, and 13pc in the town generally - equating to a total loss of £3.18m.

It adds: "Developing a new out-of-centre Lidl will give people one less reason to visit the town centre, which is already weak.

A new Morrisons store has opened in Bradwell. PHOTO: Teri Pengilley

Morrisons says a new Lidl store will adversely impact its Bradwell supermarket as well as the one in Gorleston. - Credit: Teri Pengilley

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"There will be a knock-on effect for other retailers in the town centre as a result of reduced footfall."

It says there is a better site for Lidl at Blackwall Reach and that the proposal goes against the borough's own policies.

Its objections are echoed by Tesco which also says the bid fails the sequential test which requires developers to look at town centre sites first, and fails to take account of the impact on Great Yarmouth.

Both say the proposal will affect the likelihood of a new store ever being built at Beacon Park.

The Tesco extra store in Great Yarmouth.Picture: James Bass

The Tesco extra store in Great Yarmouth.Picture: James Bass - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2014

The site has been allocated for up to 500 homes, with this bid for 240 relating to phase one.

Lidl has said, if granted, the store would "mark a multi-million pound investment in the area".

To have your say visit the borough council's planning portal using the reference 06/21/0213/O.