Tesco buys former DWP site earmarked for store

Store vision: An artist's impression of the new Tesco at Cop Lane, Penwortham
Store vision: An artist's impression of the new Tesco at Cop Lane, Penwortham
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A former Department for Work and Pensions site is poised to become a new Tesco store.

The vacant 4.9-acre site on Cop Lane, Penwortham, has detailed planning consent for a 35,000 sq ft food store.

The site was sold by London-based Telereal Trillium.

Development manager Eric Williamson said: “Throughout the planning process it has been clear that rather than see the site left empty, the local community support its redevelopment.

“We are pleased that Tesco will be helping to rejuvenate the Penwortham town centre by bringing this site back into use.”

It is expected a planning application will be submitted to South Ribble council in the near future.

In May last year, South Ribble Council planners voted unanimously to allow Sainsbury’s to develop the former Government buildings site despite objections from more than 700 people.

But now the supermarket giant has dropped the plans, citing financial reasons.

Mark Phelan, development executive for Tesco said: “We are pleased to have made this investment in Penwortham town centre.

“The project will bring a new store and will create a significant number of jobs.

“We look forward to working with the council and the local community to develop our plans, so we can decide how best to serve local people and regenerate the area.”

The property has been vacant since 2009, when it was identified for closure and vacated by the DWP as part of efficiency measures.

GL Hearn represented Telereal Trillium.

The company is an expert in managing large, complex property portfolios and ensuring that accommodation supports transformational business change.

It has long-term partnerships with some of the UK’s largest occupiers, including BT and the Department for Work and Pensions.