Dobbies application now online



The planning application which was submitted on behalf of Dobbies on September 28th has finally been added to Cheshire East planning portal, reference number 09/3109M.

This is a full planning application for a garden centre retail development in Nether Alderley incorporating a restaurant and farm foodhall, with ancillary works including a car parking, access, a “Greenhouse” Horticultural Interpretation Centre, outdoor display areas and landscaping.

Amongst the vast number of documents submitted to support this application, which we’re still working our way through, is some interesting information regarding the pre-planning consultation process which was undertaken by Dobbies. This report provides an analysis of the feedback received as well as Dobbies response to this feedback.

According to the document “the pre-planning consultation undertaken by Dobbies was designed to keep locals informed of proposals for a garden centre, to obtain views and feedback, and to provide Dobbies with the opportunity to respond to and where justified, address any concerns with the proposals in advance of submitting a detailed planning application”.

Questionnaires were distributed to 2800 properties in the local area, they were also made available at the two public exhibitions held and people were informed that they could also submit comments online via the Dobbies website.

A total of 235 completed questionnaires were returned, 29 were returned at the Nether Alderley public exhibition, 26 at the Alderley Edge exhibition, 71 were returned by post and 109 were submitted online.

The results highlight that 76% of respondents were not in support of the proposals presented at the public consultation with 23% being in favour of bringing a Dobbies Garden World to Nether Alderley, only one respondent held a neutral view.

Comments against the scheme included:

  • Development will undermine the benefit of the bypass to alleviate congestion.
  • Will set a precedent for further development along the bypass.
  • Proposal is too large.
  • SE Matthews consent was a “special” case.
  • Land is green belt and should not be built upon.
  • Will impact on neighbouring properties and businesses.
  • Do not want a Tesco/Development that will become a Tesco.

Positive comments included:

  • Welcome a new garden centre facility in this location.
  • A good addition to local amenities.
  • Educational facilities beneficial.
  • Creation of jobs.
  • Well designed and appropriate for the site.
  • Benefit to local economy/investment in area.
  • Opportunity for local producers to sell their product.

The report details Dobbies response to the main issues raised and the changes made to the scheme following the public consultation process, which include:

  • The size of the proposed garden centre has been reduced by approximately 20,000 sq ft from 65,000 sq ft to 45,000 sq ft.
  • The landscape proposals have been enhanced. Further areas of landscaping have been added and the number of ponds to the rear has been increased.
  • The distance between the proposed Dobbies and the nearest residential property to the south has been increased which allows for further landscaping and screening.
  • A new curved roof has been introduced, the eaves height has been reduced and greater areas of sedum roof have been introduced.

To view this application in full visit and search for planning application 09/3109M.

Any letters of objection/support should be sent to the case officer Susan Orrell, email [email protected].

Dobbies, Garden Centres, Garden World , Nether Alderley, Planning Applications


Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Lisa Reeves
Sunday 18th October 2009 at 1:21 pm
Two other applications have been submitted on behalf of GVA Grimley, the agent for the Dobbies new application, which relate to the permission granted in March 2005 for relocating Matthews garden centre (03/3214P).

These two applications, 09/2894M and 09/3052M, are seeking to change the requirement that the junction of Bollington Lane with Congleton Road (A34) is upgraded/improved prior to the construction of any part of the development.

They are wishing to change this condition to state that the highways works must be completed prior to occupation rather than prior to construction of the development.

The fact that they are taking the time and effort to make this change to the approved permission seems to suggest they see the existing consent as a back up plan if the new application is refused.