Gorebridge supermarket bid talks to 'big four'

A new Gorebridge supermarket would provide a 200 jobs boost for the town, according to developers.

Macdonald Estates is seeking outline planning permission for a 45,000 square foot class-one superstore on the site of Arniston Rangers' football ground at Newbyres Park.

Niall McLean, development manager, confirmed the "big four" supermarket operators – ASDA, Tesco, Morrisons and Sainsbury's – had been consulted over the plans.

Jobs

He told The Advertiser: "A site of the size proposed would typically create about 200 jobs, a mixture of full-time and part-time.

"A council report into shopping trends in Gorebridge... showed for every 100 that could be spent in Gorebridge on groceries, only 8 is spent in the town.

"The vast majority that leave the town to shop are going to Tesco at Hardengreen.

Weekly shop

"The shops in Gorebridge at the moment, they don't carry all the lines that you would want. You couldn't do a weekly shop."

Company representatives recently met with Gorebridge Community Council and Gorebridge Community Development Trust to discuss the plans and agree arrangements for public consultation.

Mr McLean confirmed Macdonald Estates had also been looking at providing a new home for Arniston Rangers, who currently play 'home' matches at Olivebank in Musselburgh: "We're planning to provide a synthetic, all weather 3G pitch and we're looking at a number of positive locations for this."

He confirmed the next two weeks would be spent collating extra information requested by Midlothian Council, after which consultation would take place.

For full story see The Advertiser Thursday, January 29, 2008

“Some people think there could be a much better use of that space.”

Secretary Archie Pacey said: “We should be using as many different consultation techniques as we can to get the maximum opportunity to the community to respond.”

“What is really required is, first of all an information exercise, and not to ask for opinions until people have had an opportunity to find out exactly what is being proposed and then give people an opportunity to express their views.”

It was agreed to organise a series of information sessions, followed by a consultation.