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Supermarket eyes town site

By Mid Devon Gazette  |  Posted: November 13, 2012

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FURTHER confirmation has been given by Tesco that it plans to build a supermarket in the centre of South Molton.

At an executive meeting, North Devon councillors were updated on the latest developments in South Molton's regeneration plan.

Diana Hill, head of property and technical services, said that terms were agreed with Tesco this year that the company's board reiterated its commitment to building a food store in the town.

Councillors heard that currently 59 per cent of South Molton residents do their convenience shopping outside the area, as revealed in a retail and leisure study carried out in the North Devon and Torridge districts.

It is thought the addition of a Tesco would stop people leaving South Molton to do their food shop and bring more choice to the area.

But South Molton town councillor John Moore believes the district council should take more notice of what the people of South Molton want.

He said: "If you listen to what the people say, they are not coming to the town to shop in a supermarket.

"There is a decision to make. What is recommended is far smaller than what Tesco actually wants to build."

South Molton town councillor David Worden agreed that more discussion needs to be had to avoid creating a "them and us situation".

SMR Phoenix was also recently relocated from Southley Road to Barnstaple Street to free up the central car park area.

A report will be compiled by both Ms Hill and the head of legal services at the council before any go ahead is given to Tesco.

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