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Plans submitted for distribution centre
PLANS for a huge regional distribution centre in Amesbury have been submitted to Wiltshire Council.
Discount retailer Home Bargains wants to build the £70million distribution hub at Solstice Park, bringing 1,200 jobs to the area.
Although the 700,000 sq ft distribution centre already has outline planning permission, TJ Morris, which owns Home Bargains, has this week submitted detailed plans to suit its requirements.
The plans include two warehouses, offices, a retail training centre - with a shop, café, training rooms and residential accommodation – and two gatehouses.
And there would also be a vehicle maintenance unit and new access, internal roads and parking as well as landscape planting.
Home Bargains is opening 50 new stores a year and wants to expand from its current 290 shops, mostly in the Midlands, to 700 nationwide.
The chain sells everything from household goods to toys, food, clothing, health products and seasonal items and wants to open southern stores from Cornwall to East Anglia, including several in Wiltshire.
Amesbury town councillors have supported the application and say they are also keen for Home Bargains to open a store in the town.
Initial plans for the regional distribution centre proved controversial, with local residents forming a protest group No Amesbury Shed Henge (NASH), fearing noise from the site, light pollution and large numbers of lorries using nearby roads.
The first planning application was turned down by Wiltshire councillors but revised plans were submitted and approved in 2009 and the then secretary of state John Denham said there was no need for a public inquiry. Home Bargains says it will comply with sound proofing and traffic restrictions and install a long awaited pedestrian crossing on Porton Road, as well as contributing to community projects.
A public consultation is currently underway and runs until November 8.
Councillors are expected to make a decision in January and the distribution centre would take between 12 and 18 months to build.