South West Wales

Sainsbury's withdraw plans for Llandeilo supermarket

The supermarket was earmarked for farm land in Llandeilo
Image caption The supermarket was earmarked for farm land in Llandeilo

Campaigners opposing plans for a Sainsbury's store in Carmarthenshire are celebrating after the grocery giant withdrew its planning application.

Objectors said they welcomed news that Llandeilo was not going to be "blighted by this oversized development".

But they now want a meeting with Carmarthenshire council to find alternative work for people.

Sainsbury's said the continued delays and uncertainty over planning approval had made it impossible to continue.

The company also has plans for a supermarket less than 10 miles (16km) away from the town in Cross Hands.

Llandeilo campaigner Simon Buckley, chief executive of the Evan-Evans Brewery, said: "I am glad that common sense has prevailed.

"The people of Llandeilo have had to work very hard to lobby against Sainsbury's plans.

"I welcome the news that our great town of Llandeilo is not going to be blighted by this oversized development.

"Plainly, Sainsbury's recognised that they would not win the argument."

Mr Buckley said the town now had to focus on developing new job opportunities and working with the various agencies to help people find alternative work opportunities.

"At Evans-Evans, we want to lead the way and will be announcing new job opportunities here at the brewery after Christmas," he added.

"There will also be opportunities for new apprentices throughout our pub estate.

"I now challenge Carmarthenshire council's chief executive Mark James, and the other senior officers in the council, to meet with me and other employers in the area to discuss what the council can do to support us.

'Larger development'

"I would hope that they would be able to offer a similar level of support to that which they [the council] showed in backing the Sainsbury's plan."

A Sainsbury's spokesman said the firm had wanted to bring a store to Llandeilo before it announced its intentions last year.

"Unfortunately, the continued delays and uncertainty over approval for the store have made it impossible for us to continue," he said.

"We will now be withdrawing our application in Llandeilo and focusing on the Cross Hands application in Carmarthenshire, which will bring forward the remediation of a larger development and create hundreds of new jobs in the area, as well providing land for housing, a new health centre and care home."

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