March 31, 2015
Council lodges formal objection over Highbridge Asda's 5am deliveries

Town councillors have backed residents in Highbridge by formally objecting against supermarket giant Asda's plans to introduce early morning deliveries at 5am on weekdays.

The store in Caxton Road is seeking a variation to its planning conditions to allow lorries to make deliveries on Mondays through to Saturdays from 5am, instead of the current 7am.

Local residents have raised a number of concerns, as first reported here, and now Burnham and Highbridge Town Council has backed them.

At the latest meeting of the council's Planning Applications Committee, Cllr Pat Burge said: "This would be very unfair to residents living right next to the store. Asda must take into consideration their neighbours."

Cllr Andy Bewer added: "I am personally against the extension of hours - the store's initial conditions include these opening hours, which are there to protect local residents."

Cllr Peter Burridge-Clayton agreed, saying: "The conditions are there for a reason - I also oppose the 5am request."

Deputy Clerk Lorna Williams said the Town Council would lodge a formal objection on the grounds of "protecting the community."

But Kate Gapper from RPS Planning, on behalf of Asda, explained: "The existing delivery restriction leads to a lack of customer choice and waste. Allowing Asda to accept deliveries from 5am on Monday to Saturday will bring about more customer benefits as food can be on the shelves before the store starts getting busy at 8am."

"Receiving deliveries when the store is at its busiest leads to conflict between staff stocking shelves and customers. In addition, it does not provide early customers with the wider choice. Deliveries as proposed will also result in benefits to the customer in terms of a wider choice of produce and longer shelf life and life of the goods once purchased by the customer."

"The earlier delivery times will allow for the first round of home shopping customers to receive the full range of fresh products thus benefiting the customer. The number of deliveries will not increase as a result of allowing this application."

The proposal will further considered by district councillors over the next few weeks.


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