‘Political pressure’ preventing new petrol station being built - Budgens

The Lord Nelson and it's massive fence at Cleeve.

The Lord Nelson and it's massive fence at Cleeve. - Credit: Archant

A supermarket chain says it is being forced to take ‘ridiculous and expensive’ steps in order to get ‘straight-forward’ plans to develop a former pub approved.

Tout Ltd wants to replace Cleeve’s boarded-up Lord Nelson with a petrol station, store, offices and a pub/café.

The scheme has failed to win North Somerset Council’s favour despite revisions.

Owner Jon Tout said: “After 14 months of negotiation and discussion it seems an appeal is the only way we are going to get a fair hearing.

“Since December 2017 we’ve responded positively to everything the council has asked for.

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“We were told on three occasions it would go to (the planning) committee with a likely recommendation for approval but each time it was postponed.”

Mr Tout says the firm was told ‘political pressure’ was delaying a decision. So instead it will go to a planning inspector to decide, if North Somerset contests the plan.

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Mr Tout added: “It’s a ridiculous and expensive outcome to what should have been a straight-forward local decision.”

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