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I'm angry and disappointed that the rejection for Aldi proposal was a ‘Done Deal’ by councillors

Dear Formby Bubble:

As it affects the entire area, including ourselves, we decided to attend the Sefton council planning meeting last night in connection with the proposed building of a new Aldi store on the Porters site. We'd heard, to our dismay that the council had recommended rejection of the plan on a number of grounds, and as there seems to be a great deal of support for the project, we wanted to go and offer our own voices in support.

There seem to be two sticking points: the effect of development in the green belt, and the overall effect of traffic management on any proposed additional junction to service the development.

Representations were made by the proposer over the fact that, despite repeated requests, there had been inadequate response from the highways committee over plans for alteration to the bypass, and response had arrived the afternoon of the council meeting too late for the proposer to include any meaningful plan.

It appears that Sefton Council interpreted this to mean that the proposer HAD NO EFFECTIVE PLAN and consequently recommended rejection of the proposal., at least partly on these grounds.

We sat through several proposals for other projects, during which interested parties were permitted to speak, and subsequent decisions were made. When the relevant section was reached, we naturally expected some debate on the matter: all councillors there having admitted they had been canvassed on the matter by constituents.

We were consequently disappointed when the matter was despatched with very little discussion, beyond the platitudes of "we welcome a store - but not here".

There was no opportunity for discussion with interested parties, nobody spoke other than council members, and the clear position seemed to be that a refusal by the council was " the done deal".

In an area where several hundred new homes have either been built or are pending, a refusal to even consider a valuable community resource is frankly beyond belief.

Needless to say, we both left the council with our faith in the local democratic process severely shaken. I have no doubt that this will not be the end of the matter, but I do question the rationale of council members in this matter.

I've tried to be as objective as possible on this subject, but I freely admit that I'm angry and disappointed that the rejection has been applied in such a callous and offhand way. I have my own views on the reasons for rejection-- this is not the place to air them.

Yours sincerely

Chris Wilson



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