Tesco set to expand store
PUBLISHED: 01:01 13 March 2008 | UPDATED: 08:53 10 June 2010
THE expansion of Exmouth's out-of-town supermarket is a step closer as Tesco seeks to consult the public on redevelopment plans. The food giants who posted profits of more than £2.5 billion last year are in talks with the Glenorchy United Reformed Chu
THE expansion of Exmouth's out-of-town supermarket is a step closer as Tesco seeks to consult the public on redevelopment plans.The food giants - who posted profits of more than £2.5 billion last year - are in talks with the Glenorchy United Reformed Church to purchase the land next door to the Salterton Road store. Though no deal has yet been completed, Tesco is keen to open community consultation on expansion plans. Tesco community relations head Melanie Chiswell will be available to meet councillors and community groups to discuss expansion plans - and Exmouth's needs - in return for future development.Typically, council-led 'section 106' agreements have bound successful applicants to providing extra facilities on top of proposed developments.Mrs Chiswell said: "We are in the process of starting to carry out a community consultation on the plans for expansion. "We always expect 106 agreements, but they are not the only way to contribute, and we will be talking to community groups to see what Exmouth needs."Tesco looks at improving its customer offer in stores across the country all the time. We wouldn't be considering expansion unless we had customer demand."The United Reformed Church - which places ownership of land in the hands of their south-western synod, a charitable trust - says talks over a sale are ongoing.The Reverend Craig Bowman said: "There are no firm plans [to sell], and we are not irrevocably committed to the process. The trust is working out the value of the land."We would be interested if it is the right thing for the church, but we won't be railroaded. We are looking to keep a long-term presence in the area, so if we did sell, it would be to relocate."The church is used by community groups such as choirs, guides and Brownies, and the church will take into account their interests.Opened in 1992, Exmouth Tesco currently operates a trading size of 32,000 square feet - and is one of the country's busiest supermarkets.