BUDGET supermarket ALDI has submitted a fresh planning application to build its first store in Stroud.

It has teamed up with the landowner of the Bath Road Trading Estate in Dudbridge, Wagner Developments Ltd, to submit rejigged plans which would transform the whole site.

The two have put forward a new joint planning application for a discount food store and wider improvements to employment space at the historic trading estate.

It is hoped the overall blueprint will secure the necessary investment to bring vacant and unviable buildings back into use and create more employment for the area.

A previous application was controversially refused planning permission in November 2016 by Stroud District Council’s development committee.

Councillors voted against their own officers’ advice after raising concerns ALDI would harm trade in town centres, displace businesses and cause traffic problems.

However, since December the German giant has been back to the drawing board and entered discussions with the landowner to try and resolve these issues.

An ALDI spokesperson confirmed: “We know many local people were disappointed when the previous application was refused, as were we.

“We have taken time to address the points raised by councillors at Development Control Committee and are confident that our new approach towards the development proposed and the preparation of a joint application deals directly with the concerns and will offer significant employment benefits for the area.”

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A Wagner Estates spokesperson added: “The existing employment floor space is currently underused and of poor quality.

“The investment will facilitate and enable the intensification of employment and improvements to units at the Bath Road Trading Estate, boosting its attractiveness to occupiers.”

If the new joint planning application is successful, the developers have committed to wasting no time in progressing this year “without delay”.

As in the last application, Aldi would be built on the site of Stroud Auction Rooms, which has been offered alternative premises on the estate.

The landlord maintain this new supermarket on Bath Road would create up to 50 direct job opportunities for the area.

Wagner Developments also hopes further improvements would then enable a significant uplift in the overall number of jobs provided at the site.

Plans would involve rejuvenating many of the old and currently unused building on site to create a thriving hub for local businesses.

It is not clear whether any of the business on site would be affected by the re-worked plans.

Companies currently on site include Zapkam, B P I Recycled Products Stroud, Dragon Yarns, Truturn Manufacturing Services Limited and Flower Cube.

After the ALDI was refused in November 2016 there was significant public outcry against the decision, with an SNJ poll seeing an overwhelming support for the store.

More than 300 people took part in an online ballot– of which 82 per cent said they were in favour of an Aldi on the Bath Road Estate.

Stroud District Council is expected to validate the planning application next week, after this time, they will be encouraging local people to let them know their views.

In the meantime, any local people requiring further information on the application or showing their support can contact an ALDI representative by emailing: aldistroud@planningpotential.co.uk

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