Facebook thumbs up for Sainsburys

RYE residents are backing a new Sainsburys store on the town’s Facebook site.

Now more members of the public will be able to have their say with Rye Town Council calling a special meeting to consider Sainsbury’s planning application to build in Rye.

The supermarket giant is currently locked in an ongoing battle with rivals Tesco, over the former Lower School site in Ferry Road.

Tesco has submitted an application to build a new store even though Sainsbury’s own the land after purchasing it from East Sussex County Council for £3.2 million.

The meeting will take place at Rye Town Hall on Monday April 18 at 6.30pm.

Rye Town Clerk Richard Farhall said: “There will be an opportunity for members of the public to make comments at the beginning of the meeting and it is anticipated that representatives of the supermarket will be present.

“Full sized hard copies of the plans may be viewed at Rye Library.”

Plans for the new Sainsbury’s store were condemned as looking like a public toilet by one local trader, although there have been widespread support for the application on Rye’s Facebook site with many favourable comments from local people.

Independent trader Jessica Prentice commented: “It will be a good thing for Rye, making it a much more attractive shopping destination.”

John Steadman said: “Rye desperately needs this, especially on Sundays.”

Amana Bheir said: “At last. This is what we desperately need. Sainsbury’s will breathe new life back into the town.”

Lisa Hickman commented: “It will create much needed employment in Rye and gets a big thumbs up for me.”

Rye councillors are concerned that the design of any new supermarket fits in with and enhances the town. They favour a pitched roof rather than a flat roof.

The new Sainsbury’s supermarket would have a sales area of 18,590 sq ft and 163 car parking spaces.

Sainsbury’s claims it would also create up to 150 job opportunities for local people and regenerate a key brownfield site which has been derelict for many years.

Max Whitehand, Sainsbury’s Regional Development Executive, said “Since purchasing the Lower School site in June we have been working hard to evolve a planning application for a new Sainsbury’s store which makes a positive contribution to Rye and - importantly, is implementable.

“We are fully committed to delivering a new Sainsbury’s supermarket on the Lower School site for the people of Rye and District and will keep people updated as the project progresses.”