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Lidl's Herne Bay store bid rejected

By Jack Dyson

Contentious plans to build a new Lidl store in Herne Bay have been narrowly rejected by councillors.

Canterbury City Council's planning committee was considering a recommendation made by officers to refuse the budget supermarket’s bid for the development off the Old Thanet Way near Greenhill.

In the planning report, it was said the land in question is "protected open space" providing a "natural green buffer" between the dual-carriageway and nearby homes.

The proposed new Lidl store
The proposed new Lidl store

The officer concluded there was no obvious need for the development to outweigh the "material harm" it would cause to the area.

Cllr Ashley Clark (Con) argued, if planning permission was accepted, it would “throw the Local Plan into the bin” and would leave “every other protected open space in the district up for grabs for unscrupulous developers".

Those who wanted to see the Lidl built believed the land’s status as a “protected open space” was unwarranted.

Cllr Amy Baker (Con) also said the overwhelming support shown by locals to the development during a Lidl-run public consultation gave the committee the “exceptional circumstances” required to accept the planning application.

Seven councillors voted to refuse planning permission for the site, while six were in favour.

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