Tesco drops plans to open new Hanley store
SUPERMARKET giant Tesco has scrapped plans for a new store at an abandoned shop which would have created 180 jobs.
The company was granted planning permission last September to open a new branch at the Lime Kiln lights junction in Hanley.
The Leek Road site used to be occupied by Kwik Save but was abandoned years ago and the building has not been used since. The land is currently being used as a car park by a neighbouring car dealership.
Now, the empty building has gone back on the market with chartered surveyors Mark Liell.
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Associate partner Sarah Bidwell said: "We are marketing the property. Tesco had planning permission but then made a decision they did not want to bring it forward.
"We are now looking for a buyer. We are not quoting a price."
A spokesman for Tesco said: "We have decided to not progress our current plans for a store in Hanley.
"We will work with Stoke-on-Trent City Council to bring forward development on the Lime Kiln Junction site. We are proud to continue investing in Stoke-on-Trent, with seven popular stores serving the needs of our loyal customers."
Tesco also had an option to take possession of the adjoining Wains cement works, which would have closed. However, Mark Liell is now only marketing the former Kwik Save.
No-one from Wains was available for comment.
In addition to the 180 jobs, Tesco had pledged to install two new pedestrian crossings and to make a financial contribution towards improving the nearby Caldon Canal.
However, the planning application was opposed by some residents, who feared it would add to traffic chaos at the busy junction, and said that the area was already well-served by other supermarkets.
Nicola Craggs, secretary of Joiners Square Residents' Association, said: "We have got Asda and Aldi and another Tesco nearby, and the Co-op on Leek Road, so I was never bothered about having another store.
"I was more worried about whether it would create more traffic, which is already horrendous around Lime Kiln Bank.
"Now, it is just a shame the building is going to remain empty and derelict. It doesn't look very good and it will get worse over time.
"I'm not sure what it could be turned into. In Joiners Square, we used to have a little post office, a florist and a chemists, which we lost. We do miss the post office, in particular.
"It might be good if the old Kwik Save could be turned into units, where we could perhaps have a shop which could take on a post office and maybe a chemist as well."