Superstore concerns as online forms go missing

NRHNBE110718b2, David Clarke from Clarkes department store Ripley as started a petittion over the proposed supermarket development.
NRHNBE110718b2, David Clarke from Clarkes department store Ripley as started a petittion over the proposed supermarket development.

RIPLEY residents are being told they will need to fill in an online consultation form on a massive superstore plan again, after a ‘technical hitch’ on a property developers’ website.

Brailsford-based Clowes Westerman has launched an ambitious multi-million pound plan to redevelop land off Nottingham Road in what has been dubbed a ‘gateway’ development for the town.

It is proposing to build a new eco -friendly superstore on the current Greenwich playing fields and more than 130 homes on neighbouring land.

So far the company says 127 people have responded to the proposals either by filling in an online or paper consultation form. But this week it revealed that due to a ‘technical hitch’, there have been problems confirming that all of the online responses have been received. It is now asking anyone who has completed a form online to do it again.

It says 27 forms were affected , but has agreed to postpone the consultation deadline for another week.

The news comes as more than 1,200 residents have now added their names to a petition against the proposals. Retailer David Clarke, who started the petition, has urged anyone who could be affected to fill in a form before consultation ends on August 25.

David, who owns WE Clarkes department store on Grosvenor Road, said: “The vast majority of people that have come into the store have agreed to sign it and feel quite strongly about it.

“A few people have been indifferent but we have had very few say anything positive about it. I would urge anyone who wants to take this further to fill in a consultation form online or by post.”

David plans to take the petition to Amber Valley Borough Council. The authority says it will discuss any petition with more than 1,200 signatures on it at the next available full council meeting.

The chamber is already due to discuss another petition handed in by Mr Clarke about the development, after a number of traders in Ripley added their names to it a fortnight ago. It is on the agenda for the September 28 meeting.

Further concerns are building among Ripley residents.

David Rogers, of Nottingham Road, would see the entrance to the eco-superstore built opposite his home.

He said: “A lot of people down here bought their homes because of the nice views out the front – not one of a supermarket.”

Leader of Ripley Town Council, Steve Freeborn, fears Ripley’s last ‘green lung’ could be lost if the Nottingham Road playing fields are removed as part of the plans. Clowes Westerman proposes to move recreational facilities currently there to the pit-top area, where it will also build a football stadium for Ripley Town.

After August 25, the proposals being drawn up by Clowes Westerman will be reviewed in the light of the representations received.