Next to create 400 jobs if permission granted to expand warehouse site at South Elmsall

The retailer Next says more than 400 full-time jobs could be created if planning permission is granted to build a fourth warehouse at their site in South Elmsall.

By Tony Gardner
Tuesday, 5th July 2022, 4:25 pm

The company has applied to build a new warehouse and distribution centre on 32 hectares of greenbelt land off Field Lane.

The plan also includes building offices, internal roads and a bridge linking the the warehouse to Next’s other three sites nearby.A planning application also includes the building of a gatehouse, solar panelling, parking areas and landscaping.

Wakefield Council have recommended that the application be approved subject to conditions.

Next says more than 400 full-time jobs could be created if planning permission is granted to build a fourth warehouse at their site in South Elmsall.

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Parish councillors are objecting to the development and are calling for greater traffic measures to be imposed during the construction phase.

A report, to be considered by Wakefield Council’s planning and highways committee on Thursday (July 7) states: “It is expected that the additional expansion at South Elmsall associated with the proposed development would result in approximately 405 (full time) new jobs.

“The jobs will provide a range of further opportunities and Next are keen to recruit staff who live locally wherever possible.

“Currently, approximately 80 percent of the existing staff live in Wakefield and Doncaster postcode areas.”

If the scheme is approved the number of employees at Next’s South Elmsall could rise above 5,000.

The report states that ‘special circumstances’ allow for development to go ahead on greenbelt land.

It adds: “Giving consideration to the location of the site, within a former coalfield area where relatively high levels of unemployment and a low workforce skills base have been a persistent problem and target for intervention, it is considered that the potential benefits of the proposed development in terms of providing for a significant level of additional employment and skills enhancement opportunities for the local community are very significant.”

Hooton Pagnell Parish Council is calling for a traffic management plan to be put in place during construction of the development.

An objection from parish councillors states: “Hampole Field Lane and Moorhouse Lane were utilised as a diversion route during the construction of the previous Next warehouse and it became evident that this route was unsatisfactory for the size and levels of traffic utilising it.

“The safety of pedestrians was an issue, as was the passing of vehicles on the narrow roads.”

“In addition, the road surface has deteriorated significantly due to the increased traffic and there are now many potholes to contend with.”

Twelve other objections have been submitted by residents with concerns about “unacceptable loss of greenbelt”, deterioration of the rural character of the area, increased pollution and “property devaluation.”