Supermarket and petrol station set for autumn completion


- Credit: Archant

WORK has begun on a new Sainsbury’s supermarket in Portishead which will bring with it a long-awaited second petrol station for the town.

More than four years after the supermarket chain announced plans to open a store in Serbert Way, Bristol-based contractors, Kier Construction Western and Wales, has been appointed and preparatory work is already underway. Both the food store and the filling station should open in the autumn.

Michelle Box, Sainsbury’s project manager, said: “We are delighted to finally be here and are looking forward to becoming part of the local community.

“We have some preparatory work taking place over the coming weeks, such as site investigation, but the main work will start in late May, which means we should be open by the end of October.”

Proposals for the new £15million store were first launched in 2009 and were approved in 2011. However, a legal challenge by Co-Operative, which called for a judicial review, delayed proceedings.

A second planning application was then approved but work was delayed after conservation group, Natural England, raised concerns about great crested newts found living close to the site. The amphibians have now been moved.

While residents are looking forward to more choice when it comes to shopping, motorists say they are jubilant over the promise of a new petrol station.

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Drivers wanting to fill up in Portishead are currently forced to join queues at the town’s only garage in Station Road, where waiting vehicles often spill out on to the surrounding road causing chaos around the Cabstand junction.

Sarah Williams of the Village Quarter said: “I think another supermarket will be good not only for the residents but for bringing more people to the town and as for another garage, the town needs one desperately.”

The new petrol station will have four pumps providing eight filling stations.

John Lane, who lives in The Vale, said: “At long last our only garage won’t be able to hold us to ransom. A bit of competition is always good for the customer and the day we have more than one filling station in town can’t come soon enough for me. “

Around 270 full and part-time jobs are expected to be created by the new Sainsbury’s development.