Tesco confident there will be only the one winner in Whittlesey- and it won’t be Sainsbury!

THERE may well be a special meeting soon to debate rival bids but Tesco expect to be the only winner in the fight for a new supermarket for Whittlesey.

On Friday Louise Gosling from Tesco’s corporate affairs department took me on a whistle stop tour of Whittlesey to emphasise their commitment to the town.

As Fenland Council’s planning committee prepares for a meeting within weeks to consider applications by both Tesco and Sainsbury, Ms Gosling was in no mood to contemplate anything other than victory.

“Tesco has spent many years trying to find a site for a new supermarket in Whittlesey and we are committed to finding the best option,” she said.

“We already have permission to build on Station Road and while this option will work we would like to make sure that the supermarket we build is in the best possible place to serve the people of Whittlesey.”

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Previously Tesco had ditched a town centre proposal but of late have submitted alternative proposals on a site in Eastrea Road near to where Sainsbury has also pitched a bid for a supermarket.

Ms Gosling says the council’s independent retail advisers have said the town could only support one supermarket and predicts a legal nightmare if Sainsbury was to gain permission for Eastrea Road and their application refused.

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If that happens Tesco would still be free to build their store in Station Road and could mount a legal challenge to stop the Sainsbury store going ahead.

“Tesco is coming,” said Ms Gosling. “We already have got permission to build here but believe the new site has better access and is better connected for the town centre.”

She added: “Developments like this don’t happen very often so it’s important to take the time to make sure we get it right.

“Over a thousand people have told us they like the plans and they can’t wait to have somewhere local to do their weekly shop.”

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