Sainsburys – service yard disturbance

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On the 4th December a resident contacted one of the KRA members complaining about the noise coming from the service yard during the previous night. On investigation it was found that Sainsbury’s had erected a marquee within the service yard and were using it for additional storage. This meant that contrary to one of the conditions imposed by Woking Borough Council on Sainsbury’s opened the store. The condition states that between 7.00pm and 7.00am there should be no deliveries except by vehicles which are loaded and unloaded directly from the vehicle to the service bay building. A formal complaint was submitted to WBC. The issue was also taken up by Cllr Whitehand.

This is not the first time that Sainsbury’s have used a marquee in the service yard and last year they were informed that it required planning permission. Sainsbury’s did submit a planning application in January 2012 for the previous December and seeking permission to use a marquee during December 2012 and January 2013. This request was withdrawn prior to it going before the Planning Committee. Given the history you can understand our surprise when we were informed on 17th December that it was not a planning issue and that planning permission was not required.

At this point let me quote from the report the Planning Officer was going to submit to the Planning Committee In February 2012. ‘The proposed erection of a marquee for a temporary period between December 2012 and January 2013 would, by reason of the intensification of operations within the outdoor service yard and the lack of any acoustic insulation to the structure, result in an adverse impact on the amenity and peaceful enjoyment of neighbouring residential properties, contrary to policies BE1, BE4 and BE5 of the Local Plan 1999.’

Given the above the residents who live close to the service yard cannot understand why Sainsbury’s went ahead and erected the marquee given they had received such clear advice and more importantly why WBC felt unable to take any action, especially against the increased in the level of noise at night.

There is some good news, on 20th December Sainsbury’s voluntarily agreed not to undertake any activities in the marquee after 1 1.00pm or before 07.00am.

Also Sainsbury’s have now submitted new plans for the service yard to be fully enclosed. The Residents’ Association welcome this move and will be examining the details of the proposed enclosure.

P.Stubbs

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About Author

Andy is a business systems and operations consultant for The Business Delicatessen and has helped the KRA over several years. He is former editor of the magazine and also runs Fat Crow Design.

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