Public support for a Sainsbury’s for Buckingham sees surprise council turnaround

Sainsbury’s looks set to have two stores in Buckingham , following a surprise decision at an Aylesbury Vale District Council (AVDC) planning meeting on Wednesday.

As reported in last week’s Advertiser, AVDC planning officers had recommended refusal for Sainsbury’s outline application for a superstore and medical centre adjacent to the new Windsor Park development, opposite Tesco.

But members of the strategic development control committee voted overwhelmingly in favour of the development.

A group of residents attended the meeting with placards supporting the new store.

The application will now be deferred, while work is done on the Section 106 developer contributions. It will then come back to committee with a recommendation for approval, early next year.

District councillor for Buckingham North, Tim Mills, who sits on the committee, said it was very unusual for the committee to vote against officer recommendations.

“It’s only the second time it’s happened since I’ve been on the committee,” he said.

“There’s overwhelming public support for the store.

“The only problem is we wanted to make sure the health centre is actually going to be built and that meant changing the Section 106 agreement.”

Sainsbury’s spokesman Tim Watkins said: “We are pleased the committee chose to support our application and listen to the views of the local community supporting increased food shopping choice and the creation of new jobs in Buckingham.

“We would like to thank everyone who has taken the time to support our application.”

Meanwhile, work to construct a Sainsbury’s Local on the former Chandos Cinema site in Buckingham will start in January, with a view to opening next summer.

The old cinema building will be demolished and the new building put in its place.