Why can’t we check-out plans for new store?

0111019 SSFF stock bnq 'stock photo Kirkcaldy - Old B & Q building on the Prom
0111019 SSFF stock bnq 'stock photo Kirkcaldy - Old B & Q building on the Prom

CONTROVERSIAL plans to build a new superstore in Bishopbriggs are being kept secret from the community.

That’s the fear from local residents who say attempts to sit down with retail giant Morrisons are hitting a brick wall.

Morrisons recently bought the site of the former Bishopbriggs High School. Planning permission is already in place for a 64,000sq ft supermarket.

But as part of the planning agreement, Morrisons must engage with members of the local community about their plans for the project.

But Anne Gillies, of the Cleddens Residents’ Group, said: “Nobody knows what’s happening. We’re still trying to get a meeting with Morrisons and the council don’t want to liaise either.”

A boycott of Morrisons’ existing store in Bishopbriggs has been suggested should the company be unwilling to meet with residents.

Anne added: “I’ve heard suggestions of putting forward an independent Bishopbriggs candidate at the next local elections to make sure the town’s voice is properly heard.”

Cleddens Residents’ Group estimate that a new supermarket on the old high school site could see a staggering increase of 8,000 cars per day - into an area which Audit Scotland already lists as one of the 21 ‘most polluted’ places in Scotland.

The lease on the supermarket company’s current site in Bishopbriggs is due to expire in the next five years.

A spokesperson for Morrisons said: “Morrisons existing store is restricted in terms of size and, although it is very early days, the potential plan is to build a new much larger and better store for the customers in Bishopbriggs, which would create more jobs in the process.”

A spokesperson for East Dunbartonshire Council said: “We fully understand the importance of the local community’s opinions and officers ensured this principle was reflected within the Section 75 agreement.

“Given the delay in bringing forward details of any development we understand the frustrations that the seeming lack of engagement so far may have caused.

“However, the development is at an extremely early stage and we understand that Morrisons is still in discussions with other local land owners.”