Traders in the city centre, who face the prospect of losing £10s millions in trade due to the controversial decision by Gloucester’s Planning Committee to grant consent to the Peel Centre expansion including a new Next store, have launched one final attempt to stop the devastating plans.

Traders are asking the Secretary of State to use their powers and call in the decision. This means the Government can decide to step in and even overturn a planning decision if they think its damage is of national importance.

The #SaveOurCityCentre campaign originally opposed the application by Peel which would see a major expansion of A1 retail at the Peel Centre. Gloucester City Councils own planning experts recommended the application be refused based on a report by leading retail experts Carter Jonas. They laid out detailed calculations that showed that the city centre would lose over 10% of its trade.

The campaign group is now calling on all traders and supporters of the city centre to get behind the campaign and back the request for a call in by the Secretary of State. Traders have until this Monday to act.

To help the campaign please send an email today to: npcu@communities.gsi.gov.uk

Quote: Gloucester City Council planning reference: 16/00005/OUT

Some of the main reasons for objection, which you may want to use, are:

Conflicts with national policies on important matters:

The proposal conflicts with the town centres first approach advocated by the National Planning Policy Framework with no material considerations of sufficient weight to overcome this.  The decision is contrary to the NPPF which clearly states that where an application is likely to have significant adverse impact, it should be refused.

Give rise to substantial cross-boundary or national controversy:

The proposal sets a precedent for similar applications elsewhere in the UK where seemingly harmful and impactful relocations can be justified on the basis of short term economic gain. The implications of not calling in the application and a positive decision being reached on the application proposal is therefore far reaching.

The decision to grant planning permission for a major expansion of A1 unrestricted trading at the Peel Centre will directly affect our city centre seeing a significant adverse impact in trade. City Centre traders need to act today if they want to see our city centre survive.