DELAYS to Tesco’s expansion plans have led members of the Skegness business community to speculate that the supermarket no longer intends to proceed with the works.
Planning approval was granted on the store’s plans to expand its floor space by almost a third of its current size back in October, but nothing has happened since.
East Lindey District Council informed Skegness and District Chamber of Commerce that the £150,000 Tesco had agreed to contribute to the town as part of its application, would not be provided until works began.
Chief executive Nigel Howells told the Chamber that the money was not yet available because ‘no work has started and neither is the start imminent’.
The Chamber had hoped to see the financial offer - provided through a Section 106 Agreement - used to benefit the town, and questioned whether the slow progress indicated the supermarket had changed its mind.
Chamber chairman Glenis Brown said: “Is it because Tesco is pulling back? They have been very quiet recently.”
The move was anticipated to provide an extra 75 jobs while increasing the range of goods offered to customers.
The Chamber had expressed concerns that Tesco’s expansion would draw trade away from the centre of town but welcomed the prospect of receiving £150,000 through the 106 Agreement.
Members questioned whether the store was profitable enough to warrant an expansion, given its ‘comparatively low footfall’ when compared with the town’s Morrisons.