It was claimed on Friday that Stonehaven has had a long term desire and requirement for a Supermarket.
This was the claim made by one of the developers at a hearing which is to help determine the future of a possible Supermarket site in Stonehaven, which took place in the Town Hall last week. The two day hearing, which ran throughout last Thursday and Friday, saw Scottish Government reporter Timothy Brian hearing from a range of developers who are proposing a supermarket build in Stonehaven. Developers who want to build at East Newtonleys, Mill of Forest, the Loop Road, Spurryhillock, Mains of Cowie and on Field 52 attended the meeting to put across their case for development. Timothy Brian’s findings will help form the area’s new local development plan which is currently being drafted. He will consider which site in the town is best suited for a superstore and if there is a need. On Thursday, Aberdeenshire Council spoke about the plans. One of the concerns which they raised was how the building of a superstore would impact the rest of the town. However the developers present assured the local authority representatives that the Town centre would continue to thrive even if a Supermarket was built.
After the local authority had made it’s concerns heard, it was the turn of the developers to speak, with each of them outlining their proposals.
Councillor Graeme Clark was in the public benches for the hearing, listening to what was discussed. He said: “I thought it was a reasonable hearing but there are two other sites in Stonehaven that were not discussed and I understand the reason for this-the Ury proposals, as they were submitted too late for inclusion, and the Recreation Grounds, as there has been no application put before the Recreation Grounds committee and therefore there can be no discussion on this.
“Stonehaven has no ideal site for a supermarket but there are many people in the town who would welcome the opportunity to do all their shopping in the area. There is certainly a need for more competition to the existing stores but there is evidence from other east coast towns that large out of town stores can have a detrimental effect on locally-run shops. The emerging Local Plan suggested the area at Spurryhillock, near the BP filling station, as a possible site for a supermarket and this was discussed last week. Some developers had a supermarket as part of a larger housing development plan for the town but these plans had not been included as part of the Local Plan. The search for a suitable site goes on and it will be up to councillors to take on board the many views expressed in the town.”