New M&S store for Worcester

Worcester News: New M&S store for Worcester New M&S store for Worcester

MARKS & Spencer is to open one of its Simply Food stores in Worcester, creating 45 new jobs.

The high street giant has secured permission to open at Elgar Retail Park, off Blackpole Road, and says it wants to “compete directly” with the nearby Sainsbury’s store.

The shop will open in the unit currently occupied by Halfords, which is expected to relocate. The move was voted through by Worcester City Council’s planning committee despite furious residents protesting that the retail park is causing huge traffic problems.

Campaigners said nearby streets were already suffering because the 433 spaces on the park are “constantly full” at weekends and Bank Holidays.

But M&S secured approval to open up, which is expected to take place in the spring as soon as Halfords has moved out.

Halfords is in talks with retail park owners to relocate, partly because it currenlty only occupies some of its 1,363 sq metre unit, leaving a whole wing empty.

M&S will take up the entire unit, saying it expects to attract plenty of customers due to the location.

The company looked at seven other locations for a Simply Food store in Worcester, discounting them all because they were too close to the existing High Street store.

Nearby resident Norman James, who lives in Salters Drive, said: “If M&S gets established on this retail park I fear we’ll reach a tipping point and have serious traffic problems.

“Masons Drive and Salters Close already gets people parking all down them because they cannot find spaces on the retail park, they even park on Blackpole Road.

“Something has to be done.”

He said the growth of the retail park, which now has nine shops, has been an “ongoing problem” and KFC has made it worse, attracting litter, congestion and seagulls.

But Stephen Rose, from Indigo consulting, who represented M&S, said it would not be fair to penalise the company for traffic problems that “already exist”.

“If there’s traffic in the area that’s a conversation that needs to be had with the county council,” he said.

“We think it’ll be a popular store, it will do very well but it won’t make the problems that already exist any worse.”

The planning committee agreed to accept a lifting of restrictions so the retail unit is able to sell food and drink. 

Councillor Alan Amos said: “I am not against M&S coming, but I am against the traffic problems it will cause.”

Councillor Paul Denham said he didn’t think it will make the congestion “significantly worse”, which other politicians agreed with.

Labour’s Roger Berry and Coun Amos voted against, Conservative politicians David Tibbutt and Derek Prodger abstained, but the rest voted in favour.

M&S will join Next Home, Homesense, Maplin Electronics, Dunelm Mill, Argos and Homebase on the site.

Comments (21)

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7:44am Sat 21 Dec 13

truth must out says...

Campaigners said nearby streets were already suffering because the 433 spaces on the park are “constantly full” at weekends and Bank Holidays.
I have NEVER had a problem parking on the retail park. Looks like the NIMBYS are getting up a march. Also bear in mind a car can be parked anywhere on the highway as long as it is legal.
Campaigners said nearby streets were already suffering because the 433 spaces on the park are “constantly full” at weekends and Bank Holidays. I have NEVER had a problem parking on the retail park. Looks like the NIMBYS are getting up a march. Also bear in mind a car can be parked anywhere on the highway as long as it is legal. truth must out

9:48am Sat 21 Dec 13

moonpig says...

I can't see why the local residents should have an issue with this. I could understand concern if they were planning to build a whole new park but the retail park has been there a very long time now and a change of shop won't make a blind bit of difference to anything. We should be pleased that more jobs will be created and more money spent within our city.
I can't see why the local residents should have an issue with this. I could understand concern if they were planning to build a whole new park but the retail park has been there a very long time now and a change of shop won't make a blind bit of difference to anything. We should be pleased that more jobs will be created and more money spent within our city. moonpig

10:48am Sat 21 Dec 13

jb says...

I live very close to the retail park and would absolutely refute these claims about the parking problems. The only cars I've seen parked on Blaclpole Road were from the staff at Bridgewater House before they relocated to County Hall. There are two huge car parks serving both sides of the retail park and although at Christmas they get busy I haven't seen any overspill on road parking for years. I think this store will be good for the retail park, more variety is needed and it's not as if it's another fast food outlet setting up its a reputable, quality company.
I live very close to the retail park and would absolutely refute these claims about the parking problems. The only cars I've seen parked on Blaclpole Road were from the staff at Bridgewater House before they relocated to County Hall. There are two huge car parks serving both sides of the retail park and although at Christmas they get busy I haven't seen any overspill on road parking for years. I think this store will be good for the retail park, more variety is needed and it's not as if it's another fast food outlet setting up its a reputable, quality company. jb

12:06pm Sat 21 Dec 13

Jabbadad says...

There will be a considerable difference in the numbers of cars and customers from the change from Halfords to M& S.
But I also welcome M & S a truly quality Store.
Those who say that traffic problems don't exist now must go out at nights when only KFC and Mac Donalds are open, since the traffic flow has greatly increased over the past 2 to 3 Years. And without efficient traffic flow controls onto and leaving these Retail Parks you get what we have now. Just another Worcester City Planning Botch.
If Sainsbury ever move onto it's new site and traffic from there is discharged directly onto Blackpole Road grid locks will be quickly seen. Only large Traffic islands such as the one in Blackpole road will handle traffic efficiently.
There will be a considerable difference in the numbers of cars and customers from the change from Halfords to M& S. But I also welcome M & S a truly quality Store. Those who say that traffic problems don't exist now must go out at nights when only KFC and Mac Donalds are open, since the traffic flow has greatly increased over the past 2 to 3 Years. And without efficient traffic flow controls onto and leaving these Retail Parks you get what we have now. Just another Worcester City Planning Botch. If Sainsbury ever move onto it's new site and traffic from there is discharged directly onto Blackpole Road grid locks will be quickly seen. Only large Traffic islands such as the one in Blackpole road will handle traffic efficiently. Jabbadad

1:42pm Sat 21 Dec 13

MJI says...

Should have used Comet that is already empty.
.
Will miss Halfords
Should have used Comet that is already empty. . Will miss Halfords MJI

2:15pm Sat 21 Dec 13

Jabbadad says...

Yes good suggestion MJI
However for some time (2 years or so) at Halfords when you finally found a member of staff they have always been polite, and overworked. It has a drab frontage which also always seemed closed looking from the outside that is apart from the goods stacked outside.
So we will be very short for Motor Spares shops now?
Yes good suggestion MJI However for some time (2 years or so) at Halfords when you finally found a member of staff they have always been polite, and overworked. It has a drab frontage which also always seemed closed looking from the outside that is apart from the goods stacked outside. So we will be very short for Motor Spares shops now? Jabbadad

3:35pm Sat 21 Dec 13

Budweis-her says...

Halfords aren't closing, they're just relocating.

At least if Halfords move the local residents won't have to put up with all the chavvy boy racers in their sooped up Corsas and Saxos with loud exhausts looking for more Ripspeed rubbish for their rubbish cars.
Halfords aren't closing, they're just relocating. At least if Halfords move the local residents won't have to put up with all the chavvy boy racers in their sooped up Corsas and Saxos with loud exhausts looking for more Ripspeed rubbish for their rubbish cars. Budweis-her

8:47am Sun 22 Dec 13

imustbeoldiwearacap says...

Since Halfords moved it's Autocentre to The Butts, they have been paying rent on a unit they do not use - so logical they move somewhere smaller! As to Marks moving in - no problems with that and there is no reason why the parking issue will change, but something does need to be done about the traffic on Blackpole Road - especially if Sainsburys move virtually opposite the Elgar RP. Better for all the entrances/exits to the retail parks be on the roundabout and traffic light controlled at peak times (but it would be one BIG roundabout)
Since Halfords moved it's Autocentre to The Butts, they have been paying rent on a unit they do not use - so logical they move somewhere smaller! As to Marks moving in - no problems with that and there is no reason why the parking issue will change, but something does need to be done about the traffic on Blackpole Road - especially if Sainsburys move virtually opposite the Elgar RP. Better for all the entrances/exits to the retail parks be on the roundabout and traffic light controlled at peak times (but it would be one BIG roundabout) imustbeoldiwearacap

11:17am Sun 22 Dec 13

liketoknow says...

huge traffic problems! not like outside the university, or timberdine avenue in term time then. don't hear any complaints about that.
huge traffic problems! not like outside the university, or timberdine avenue in term time then. don't hear any complaints about that. liketoknow

11:58am Sun 22 Dec 13

Jabbadad says...

wearacap you need to visualise / experience the additional traffic that M & S in comparrison to Halfords will bring. Go up there on any week-ends and try to find a space then after shopping, try to get back onto the Blackpole Road. There will be a huge increase in traffic in comparrison to Halfords now, when frequently you will find just a couple of customers in the store.
I agree that the planners got it wrong again by making all the Entries and Exits at the same positions. Traffic IN could have been on Blackpole Road and Traffic OUT could have been on Bilford Road, (or the other way around) all controlled by Traffic Lights as said, which could also be of use to the School kids who have to cross these busy roads. I always stop for these little Angels, but many don't.
wearacap you need to visualise / experience the additional traffic that M & S in comparrison to Halfords will bring. Go up there on any week-ends and try to find a space then after shopping, try to get back onto the Blackpole Road. There will be a huge increase in traffic in comparrison to Halfords now, when frequently you will find just a couple of customers in the store. I agree that the planners got it wrong again by making all the Entries and Exits at the same positions. Traffic IN could have been on Blackpole Road and Traffic OUT could have been on Bilford Road, (or the other way around) all controlled by Traffic Lights as said, which could also be of use to the School kids who have to cross these busy roads. I always stop for these little Angels, but many don't. Jabbadad

5:09pm Sun 22 Dec 13

imustbeoldiwearacap says...

Jabbadad - never have a problem finding a space - and I use both retail parks a lot (Halfords/Maplin) and (Lidl) the problem is as always people hunting for a space nearest the shops! If Halfords is full then I go to Lidl. As to the suggestion of M&S using the Comet building - too near Lidl?
Jabbadad - never have a problem finding a space - and I use both retail parks a lot (Halfords/Maplin) and (Lidl) the problem is as always people hunting for a space nearest the shops! If Halfords is full then I go to Lidl. As to the suggestion of M&S using the Comet building - too near Lidl? imustbeoldiwearacap

6:12pm Sun 22 Dec 13

copierman says...

Look what has happened to the retail park in Evesham since M&S have opened.
I would have though the Comet site would have been better for all the reasons quoted
Look what has happened to the retail park in Evesham since M&S have opened. I would have though the Comet site would have been better for all the reasons quoted copierman

12:23am Mon 23 Dec 13

Jabbadad says...

Didn't they have a previous shop in Evesham and then relocated to the retail Park?
But please what happened Evesham is a very special place for me.
Didn't they have a previous shop in Evesham and then relocated to the retail Park? But please what happened Evesham is a very special place for me. Jabbadad

2:04pm Mon 23 Dec 13

Guy66 says...

imustbeoldiwearacap wrote:
Jabbadad - never have a problem finding a space - and I use both retail parks a lot (Halfords/Maplin) and (Lidl) the problem is as always people hunting for a space nearest the shops! If Halfords is full then I go to Lidl. As to the suggestion of M&S using the Comet building - too near Lidl?
Never had a problem parking at the retail park ether. The only issue I ever see are the "I must park next to the shop door" brigade. Plenty of spaces only a few steps further away!
[quote][p][bold]imustbeoldiwearacap[/bold] wrote: Jabbadad - never have a problem finding a space - and I use both retail parks a lot (Halfords/Maplin) and (Lidl) the problem is as always people hunting for a space nearest the shops! If Halfords is full then I go to Lidl. As to the suggestion of M&S using the Comet building - too near Lidl?[/p][/quote]Never had a problem parking at the retail park ether. The only issue I ever see are the "I must park next to the shop door" brigade. Plenty of spaces only a few steps further away! Guy66

5:08pm Mon 23 Dec 13

Jabbadad says...

I think people were also refering to the Access On or Off from both the Retail Parks which particularly over the weekends are quite a bottleneck.
But I agree I have never had a problem finding a space away from the front doors ether. And very pleased about M&S. I will probaly go and spend my Extra £2 20 State Pension that Cameron keeps on about, but oops I forgot it will be less the deduction from my Pension savings Credit which they take for each increase in my State Pension, so perhaps I will go just once a year not twice, OH Greedy me.
I think people were also refering to the Access On or Off from both the Retail Parks which particularly over the weekends are quite a bottleneck. But I agree I have never had a problem finding a space away from the front doors ether. And very pleased about M&S. I will probaly go and spend my Extra £2 20 State Pension that Cameron keeps on about, but oops I forgot it will be less the deduction from my Pension savings Credit which they take for each increase in my State Pension, so perhaps I will go just once a year not twice, OH Greedy me. Jabbadad

8:02pm Mon 23 Dec 13

imustbeoldiwearacap says...

But then Jabbadad, given M&S staff issues, and the threats to boycott from Telegraph readers - M&S will no longer have the cash to open a new store? So your pension is safe!!!
But then Jabbadad, given M&S staff issues, and the threats to boycott from Telegraph readers - M&S will no longer have the cash to open a new store? So your pension is safe!!! imustbeoldiwearacap

8:51pm Mon 23 Dec 13

Jabbadad says...

Hooray, now what shall I invest that huge ammount in???
Hooray, now what shall I invest that huge ammount in??? Jabbadad

8:48am Tue 24 Dec 13

imustbeoldiwearacap says...

Jabbadad wrote:
Hooray, now what shall I invest that huge ammount in???
A lottery ticket? (If you have enough now they've put the cost up)
[quote][p][bold]Jabbadad[/bold] wrote: Hooray, now what shall I invest that huge ammount in???[/p][/quote]A lottery ticket? (If you have enough now they've put the cost up) imustbeoldiwearacap

8:12pm Tue 24 Dec 13

mijas4@live.com says...

truth must out wrote:
Campaigners said nearby streets were already suffering because the 433 spaces on the park are “constantly full” at weekends and Bank Holidays.
I have NEVER had a problem parking on the retail park. Looks like the NIMBYS are getting up a march. Also bear in mind a car can be parked anywhere on the highway as long as it is legal.
What an arrogant t*** you are, rather than label people as NIMBYS engage in a proper debate. Your own singular experience does not necessarily count.
[quote][p][bold]truth must out[/bold] wrote: Campaigners said nearby streets were already suffering because the 433 spaces on the park are “constantly full” at weekends and Bank Holidays. I have NEVER had a problem parking on the retail park. Looks like the NIMBYS are getting up a march. Also bear in mind a car can be parked anywhere on the highway as long as it is legal.[/p][/quote]What an arrogant t*** you are, rather than label people as NIMBYS engage in a proper debate. Your own singular experience does not necessarily count. mijas4@live.com

1:13am Thu 26 Dec 13

madamebadham says...

Truth must out.
Who's truth exactly?
Truth must out. Who's truth exactly? madamebadham

12:20pm Fri 27 Dec 13

Guy66 says...

mijas4@live.com wrote:
truth must out wrote:
Campaigners said nearby streets were already suffering because the 433 spaces on the park are “constantly full” at weekends and Bank Holidays.
I have NEVER had a problem parking on the retail park. Looks like the NIMBYS are getting up a march. Also bear in mind a car can be parked anywhere on the highway as long as it is legal.
What an arrogant t*** you are, rather than label people as NIMBYS engage in a proper debate. Your own singular experience does not necessarily count.
And you do not get any further calling people names!
[quote][p][bold]mijas4@live.com[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]truth must out[/bold] wrote: Campaigners said nearby streets were already suffering because the 433 spaces on the park are “constantly full” at weekends and Bank Holidays. I have NEVER had a problem parking on the retail park. Looks like the NIMBYS are getting up a march. Also bear in mind a car can be parked anywhere on the highway as long as it is legal.[/p][/quote]What an arrogant t*** you are, rather than label people as NIMBYS engage in a proper debate. Your own singular experience does not necessarily count.[/p][/quote]And you do not get any further calling people names! Guy66

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