Supermarket plan ‘has overwhelming support’


Rebecca Cole

PLANS for a new supermarket which could create about 250 jobs, have received “overwhelming support”, it has been claimed.

A public consultation was held earlier this year by Manchester-based developers Capital and Centric PLC on proposals for a huge development on the Vauxhall Industrial Estate, Ruabon.

Director Adam Higgins was delighted by the positive response to the £6 million project, which would see the former Griflex factory demolished and one of the “big four” supermarkets in its place. He is calling on residents to tell the council how they feel or risk the application being rejected.

He said: “There is clearly a real need for a supermarket to service the people of Rhos, Johnstown, Penycae and Ruabon because the vast majority are having to travel to Wrexham to do their weekly shop.

“We couldn’t believe how strong the response was, the support was unprecedented.”

Mr Higgins said the 46,000 square foot supermarket, about half the size of Sainsbury’s Plas Coch store, would service about 20,000 people in the four villages and he believes it is very unusual to find such a large area without a large store.

About 200 residents took part in the public consultation and Mr Higgins said 92 per cent of those who responded voted in favour of the development.

But the only correspondence the council has received has been six objections.

He added: “The site’s ideal because it’s very central to the four villages and the building’s been empty for about 13 years so we’d be turning something that’s a bit of an eyesore into a much-needed service. And projects like this can often get hundreds of complaints so to only have six is a massive achievement.

“But there’s still work to be done and we want people to realise that without their input this might not get the go-ahead.”

Up to 250 jobs could be created if proposals get the green light but concerns about congestion particularly at the junction of Ruabon Road and the entrance to the Brother factory.

But Mr Higgins insists these issues have been addressed in the formal application with the possibility of traffic lights being set up.

Claire Klimaszewski, clerk to Ruabon Community Council, said the councillors were very much in favour of the project.

“We have a need for job creation and residents are desperate for better shopping facilities, especially those with disabilities who find it hard to go all the way to Wrexham.”

Michael Edwards, chairman of Rhos Community Council, added: “Residents are also keen for a new petrol station as there’s only one in the whole area so we would hope any supermarket would provide this as well.

“Although one or two of the councillors have concerns the majority of us are well behind the project.”

The developers are due to meet with Wrexham Council again this week to discuss their proposals but as yet no decision has been made.

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