Havering Council passes for new Tesco shop front on South Street despite objections

Plans for the glass and metal design of the new Tesco in Romford town centre were passed at the council’s planning meeting on Thursday (April 26) – despite objections from councillors about the fact the supermarket giant had already started construction work.

Tesco’s application to build a shop front for its new South Street premises passed by just one vote.

Opposing the plans, Cllr Andrew Curtin (Romford Town, Conservative), cabinet member for cultures, towns and communities, said: “That they are doing it before permission has been granted really is breathtaking.

“I think we should send the applicants away with a flea in their ear. Let’s reject the identikit approach to shop front design.”

He added: “It’s so easy to do better.”

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Cllr Curtin said the shop front was poorly designed and did not take the opportunity to “improve the character of the area”.

Cllr Barry Tebbutt (Brooklands, Conservative) added it was “comical” that Tesco had started building without permission.

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But Cllr Steven Kelly (Emerson Park, Conservative), the council’s deputy leader, pointed out the application for the shop’s use had already been approved. “We might dream we can control another shop becoming a Tesco but we can’t. They can do what they like inside the building.”

The plans for the shop front were passed by six votes to five. Two other applications, one for an illuminated Tesco sign above the shop and one to add a cash machine by the entrance, both passed.

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