Opponents to rally against £20million Brixham Tesco development
OPPONENTS to a £20million Tesco superstore planned for Brixham Town Centre remain on the war path.
The Brixham Residents Against a Tesco Superstore action group have not given up the fight against the central car park scheme.
With a major planning meeting coming up, the group is looking to hammer home the message that the proposed development is bad for the town during a special demonstration in the port.
BRATS is calling on all the residents who have been campaigning against the plans and the 2,000 people who signed a petition opposing the store, to come out in force when members of the Torbay Council's planning committee are in town for a site visit.
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Town councillor Rosemary Clarke, who was elected to Brixham Town Council on the BRATS ticket last autumn, said: "We are pleased that the members and officers are visiting the site. However, we have been told no-one is allowed to speak to them.
"So we want lots of people in the Town Square to take part in a range of visual activities.
"There is great significance in the activities taking place in the Town Square as this will go if the supermarket development is built.
"We want the planning committee members to go away with a clear message that there is a general and genuine opposition in the town to the application."
Protesters will wear a 'No' rosette and carry placards while balloons will be released to show councillors and planners the actual height of the proposed development.
The Tesco scheme has been recommended for conditional approval when it is determined at a Parkfield hearing in Paignton on Wednesday March 6.
The proposed development has received the backing of planning officers and Deputy Mayor Cllr Dave Thomas who said it would be a good deal for Brixham.
Many people in the town believe the development will cause massive chaos during and after the construction period and will lead to the closure of several independent shops.
As well as BRATS, objectors include English Heritage which feels that the design could be improved on the frontages to Middle Street and Brewery Lane.
The Environment Agency has no objection so long as the scheme includes the implementation and maintenance of flood defence measures.
Highways and Environmental Health have expressed some concerns about traffic, access and extra noise and air pollution which could be generated by the proposal.
Brixham Town Council rejected the scheme on highway and public safety grounds at a special meeting in January.
BRATS believe the scheme will be the death knell of Brixham's independent shops and will have a detrimental impact on the visual fabric of the port and will turn Brixham into a 'clone town' while public access and public toilets facilities will be lost.
Finally Brixham-based firm Stan Bolt Architects have raised concerns about the size of the proposed building, its lack of permeability and asked that more sympathetic alternative approaches be explored to minimise the visual impact on the town.
The planning application will be determined by Torbay Council's planning committee on Wednesday March 6 at 2pm at Parkfield in Paignton.