A decision on plans for a Marks & Spencer foodhall and Toby Carvery pub in Angmering is set to be made next month.
Back in May the hybrid planning application for land south of the A259 and east of Brook Lane was deferred by Arun district councillors so issues with access to the site could be resolved.
The access has been revised, but planning officers are still objecting to the plans arguing they fail to meet the sequential test for convenience retail proposals in out-of-centre locations.
The application is due to be discussed again by members of the council’s development control committee on Wednesday October 2.
The site has had a complicated history as plans were approved in June 2016, but this decision was quashed in February 2017 after a legal challenge.
Full permission is being sought for the M&S retail store, while outline permission is requested for the public house element of the scheme.
According to council officers the former Waitrose site in Littlehampton is an available location for a general foodstore.
They point out the NPPF states that proposals that fail to meet the sequential test should be refused.
Meanwhile they argue a new out-of-town food store would reduce trade in both Littlehampton and Rustington town centres.
They concluded: “Overall, the proposal would bring economic benefits to the area through the creation of jobs, and despite not meeting the sequential test, would not cause significant harm to the vitality and viability of the town centres.
“The proposal would form a logical extension to the Manor Retail Park and complete the built form in this constrained parcel of land when combined with the approved residential scheme to the west of Brook Lane. However, these material considerations are not considered to outweigh the failure to meet the sequential test and the resultant unacceptability of this type of development in a countryside location.”
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