Parking problem may put brakes on supermarket

Get Surrey

By Guy Martin
November 05, 2010
Tesco Parking Questionnaire

Judy Smale (SAVE spokesperson), David Baker (ARA Website Editor), Paul Le Versha (ARA Chairman) and Gillian Russell (SAVE spokesperson). Photograph taken by Kenn Jordan

IT is more than two months since a government planning inspector ruled that a Tesco supermarket could be built in Ashtead, but opponents believe a parking issue could halt its progress.

This week, groups who fought for more than two years to stop the store being built in The Street launched a questionnaire on the issue of parking, insisting that “all is not lost” after the inspector’s decision.

The 750sq-m supermarket at the former Esso garage site, with nine flats above, was given permission although 43 conditions have to be met as part of the development.

And one of these may cause Tesco particular problems, villagers now believe.

It states that building cannot start until Mole Valley District Council confirms it has relocated 74 long-stay parking spaces currently in the Peace Memorial Hall car park, which will serve the planned store.

Campaigners want the council, which also opposed the Tesco plans at August’s public inquiry, to take on board villagers’ views as it decides what approach to take.

They will be delivering leaflets to explain how people can take part in the questionnaire, which will be sent to the local authority before Christmas.

Paul Le Versha, chairman of the Ashtead Residents’ Association, said: “Public opinion has already played a very important role and I believe that it could now be crucial.

“On-street parking is an increasing problem in the village, with roads such as Grove Road already experiencing problems…

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