Belfast Telegraph

UK Website Of The Year

Supermarket Lidl has secured permission to open at Connswater Shopping Centre

By Margaret Canning

Published 14/06/2016

Lidl has secured permission to open at Connswater Shopping Centre
Lidl has secured permission to open at Connswater Shopping Centre

A new Lidl supermarket at east Belfast shopping centre Connswater is now set to go ahead.

Belfast City Council gave the green light to the German discounter’s plans for a new store at Connswater on Monday evening.

Connswater has been struggling to find a big-name retailer to fill the void left by former big tenants, Tesco and Dunnes.

A spokesman for the supermarket — which currently has 38 stores around Northern Ireland — said: “Lidl welcomes the positive recommendation from Belfast City Council regarding a new development at Connswater.

“Lidl believes that the new development will greatly enhance the shopping experience in the Connswater area and we look forward to this exciting redevelopment.

“We would like to thank the Connswater Traders Association, and our Connswater customers, for their ongoing support and we look forward to working with them over the coming months.”

Last night’s decision was a turnaround for the council, which had previously indicated it would turn down the plans. 

Belfast could get new Lidl as planners make U-turn  

It had argued that there were other vacant sites, such as the former Tesco and Dunnes buildings at Connswater, and vacant sites at the Park Centre in west Belfast and at Forestside in the south of the city.

But last week, as it previewed last night’s planning meeting, it said that it had changed its view after receiving further legal advice, hearing the opinion of the director of planning and place.

The new store is subject to conditions, including that work is to start within a five-year period.

Boost for troubled Connswater as Lidl unveils expansion plan  

Alliance councillor David Armitage welcomed the development, saying he is "delighted" by the decision.

"I’m absolutely delighted the initial decision to decline Lidl has been overturned," he said.

"In recent months I’ve recused myself from the Committee in order to work alongside residents and traders to ensure this vital project got the go-ahead.

"I’m pleased to have represented the needs of the community, challenging perceptions and in the end changing minds on the issue.

"While some still saw fit to argue against the application, hopefully the years of struggling for Connswater are now over and the local community can look forward a revived period for the centre."

Online Editors

Your Comments

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting? customercare@belfasttelegraph.co.uk

Read More

From Belfast Telegraph