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Vets fight back against plan for new rival surgery across the street

PUBLISHED: 09:00 18 February 2017

Natwest Bank, Yatton.

Natwest Bank, Yatton.

Archant

A veterinary practice in a North Somerset village says plans to open a competing business on the other side of the street are not viable.

The new vet will be located in the Pages Court precinct if it goes ahead. The new vet will be located in the Pages Court precinct if it goes ahead.

Watkins and Tasker has been based in Yatton’s High Street for more than 30 years.

The surgery’s owners have spoken out after a planning application to convert the former Natwest bank, in the Pages Court precinct, into a new vets was submitted to North Somerset Council.

Although it claims it is not opposed to competition, the surgery said it felt a village of Yatton’s size would not be able to sustain two veterinary surgeries.

In a letter of objection submitted to the council’s planning website, Watkins and Tasker said: “As a long-established veterinary surgery we have both an excellent local reputation and a realistic grasp on the long-term sustainability of the proposed development.

“We are not, it must be stressed, in opposition to valid competition. We have branches in other North Somerset towns of greater size and happily co-exist with our respected competitors.

“The village of Yatton is considerably smaller than these towns – therefore, we do question the ongoing viability of two veterinary practices.

“The application fails to acknowledge the existing availability of veterinary services in the local centre and provides no evidence that the proposal will positively support footfall in the precinct area.”

Watkins and Tasker also claimed demand for shops in Yatton’s village centre would grow as almost 700 homes are built in the area during the next decade.

Visit www.n-somerset.gov.uk/planning to view the proposal.

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