Ringroad supermarket ‘will create 160 jobs’

Asda exhibition in Buckingham Community Centre.'120913M-B624
Asda exhibition in Buckingham Community Centre.'120913M-B624

The prospect of a new supermarket on Buckingham’s bypass is a step closer after plans for an Asda store were submitted to Aylesbury Vale District Council (AVDC) this week.

If appproved, the new store would create up to 160 new jobs, says Asda, most of which would be available to local people.

Asda exhibition in Buckingham Community Centre.'120913M-B628

Asda exhibition in Buckingham Community Centre.'120913M-B628

Asda has been looking to put a new store on the site of the redundant Focus DIY store since last autumn.

A two-day public consultation event in Buckingham Community Centre and the Best Western Hotel in September was well attended by local people showing overwhelming support for the move.

Some said they currently travel to Asda in Bletchley to do their weekly shop.

Now Asda has submitted two planning applications which would allow it to convert the former DIY retail unit, which has been vacant for nearly two years, into an Asda foodstore.

The structure of the existing building would be retained and it would be refitted internally as an Asda store

Minor changes are planned to the site layout, including important additional car parking on the former Focus garden centre.

The main thrust of the planning application is to allow food to be sold from 43 per cent of the existing retail floor space. The unit currently has consent to sell all non-food or comparison goods.

Asda’s senior communications manager, Oliver Jones, said: “The proposal to bring Asda to Buckingham has proved overwhelmingly popular with the local community.

“Local residents have made it very clear that they support our application and we hope that the council and local councillors will too.

“At Asda we’re dedicated to being at the heart of local communities and our Community Life programme is designed to support our investment in the areas around our stores.

“Whether it’s through providing space, fundraising or volunteering, we aim to give something important back to the communities we work in.

“On top of this, we’re confident that our proposal has significant benefits for the economic vitality and viability of Buckingham, creating jobs, increasing customer choice and bringing back into economic use a building in an important gateway location which, while currently lying idle, does nothing for the town.”