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Ten out-of-towners will decide town's future

(July 30, 2009)
AN ALL male group of 10 county councillors, who all reside outside Warminster, will decide whether or not the town goes forward and gets its new Waitrose supermarket on Wednesday evening.

In this week’s Warminster Journal the top class supermarket partnership has confirmed its interest in coming to the town and occupying the Dents site.

Despite all the advantages the planners in Trowbridge have recommended refusal basically as, they believe, the application fails ‘the sequential test’

In other words they prefer another site for a supermarket - coincidentally on a site where the council has a financial  interest.

They say the Dents proposal will harm the vitality and viability of the town centre.

“These are the same planners who have helped ruined the development of Trowbridge,” said former county councillor Steve Dancey.

“They should listen to the people as the vast majority of the town wants this to go ahead as the benefits hugely outweigh the disbenefits.”

The huge benefits of this scheme are:

* It will sustain a vital employer in the town (Dents)

* Waitrose will attract many more wealthy shoppers to the town than would any other supermarket.

* It will provide excellent employment opportunities from a particularly good and acclaimed employer.

* It is deliverable even at a time of recession

The rival scheme - preferred by the planners will.

Involved destruction of our much-loved library.

Will provide us with a bog-standard supermarket that will have no attraction to discerning shoppers

Will have a negative impact on the Avenue School and is strongly opposed by them

Will cause considerable disruption to the central car park during construction.

The only slight advantage is that it is a little nearer the High Street.

“The new library proposed by Stockland is supposed to be more ecofriendly but we could not forget the massive carbon footprint that will be caused as a result of demolition of the old library and the building of a new one - a demolition which is all totally unnecessary and disgusts many local people,” added Steve.

“A Waitrose in Warminster will have huge sustainability benefits as it will reduce the number of journeys made to Salisbury to shop by people living in places like Hindon, Tisbury, Codford and Heytesbury who currently eschew Warminster as a shopping destination because of its lack of choice.
"The Dents proposal is also 'deliverable' - not a word I noticed in the planners' report despite reading it through on two occasions.”
Vision for Warminster will attend the planning meeting and will be making a recorded vote and noting any comments made by our local representatives if they decide to comment - which we hope they will.
(The 'Out of Towners' is of course a very funny play (and film) by Neil Simon where a couple from the sticks visit a town and continually make the wrong choices.)

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