Mon, 17 Jun 2019
ALDERMASTON Parish Council has raised some concerns about the proposed Lidl store in Tadley.
The proposal, submitted to West Berkshire Council, is to build the supermarket on land south of Ravenswing Farm, adjoining Aldermaston Road and Silchester Road.
The site is currently the home of the annual Treacle Fair.
At a parish council meeting on Tuesday, three representatives from Lidl attended to present the plans and answer questions from the public.
The biggest concern, initially raised by a member of the public, was the number of parking spaces allocated to the store.
The plans have made provision for 129 spaces, which the council said would be inadequate.
Victoria Burton from Lidl said: “It’s important for us to ensure the car park is working and for an extension we would have to buy extra land.”
Her colleague Douglas Symington added: “There is no provision for any other land to expand the car park and we think 129 spaces will be adequate for the store.”
Further concerns were raised by the councillors about traffic in the vicinity and how the store would impact on it.
Mr Symington said: “The shift change times at AWE are the worst – at 8am and 4pm – and shoppers will make the choice not to shop at those times.”
Councillor Alison Faulkner said: “I feel sorry for the people trying to get out after shopping.
“In the evening rush hour it is going to be like IKEA – and even worse if you are trying to get across the carriage way.”
Councillor Oliver Hinton added: “I don’t really care about the traffic implications as I avoid Tadley as it’s a traffic nightmare.
“But I am very for the idea of competition for shoppers.”
Cynthia Newman, who chairs the Aldermaston Charity, which owns the site the store would be built on, spoke to the Newbury Weekly News after the meeting regarding concerns about the fate of the Tadley Treacle Fair.
She said: “We have never had any plans to stop the Tadley Treacle Fair.
“It will continue to take place in the same field and won’t be any smaller.”
Parish council chairman Dave Shirt said after the meeting: “Despite wide advertising, there was poor turnout from the general public [two people], which we interpret as lack of interest.”
The proposed store will be 2,177 sq m and will employ the equivalent of 23 full-time members of staff – comprising 35 part-time and five full-time.
The store, if approved, will be open seven days a week from 8am until 10pm.
Aldermaston Parish Council decided not to formally object to the application, but did raise its concerns regarding traffic impact, particularly on the A340, the proposed number of parking places and no plans for expansion, development on a greenfield site when there are brownfield alternatives and the opportunity to review provision of bus stops in the vicinity.