M&S food hall turned down by city planners

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A MArks and Spencer food hall will not be built in Sandal after planners rejected the scheme.

Blueprints had been submitted for the store, which would have created 50 new jobs, at Asdale Road, near to the existing ASDA and Aldi site, and had the backing of many residents with 23 letters of support.

Along with a 15,000 sq ft store, applicant The Sandal Property Company also wished to build other commercial 
units, including two new restaurants.

But Wakefield Council’s planning committee followed the planning officers’ recommendation to turn down the development because the land in question is considered as green belt - previously undeveloped.

Following strict guidelines, exceptional circumstances are needed for approval to be given on green belt land, and the committee felt it fell considerably short.

They raised questions over existing traffic issues, and whether it was ‘overkill’ with existing supermarkets and restaurants.

Coun Kevin Swift also spoke about the need for an outlying M&S food outlet with an existing shop in Wakefield city centre.

He said: “We generally try to encourage trade in the city centre instead of suburban places.”