Revised plans for new retail development at Handforth Dean

Revised plans have been submitted for a new retail development adjacent to the existing Handforth Dean retail park.

Orbit Developments are now proposing to demolish the existing warehouses on their site at the junction of Earl Road and Epsom Avenue in Handforth and replace them with a parade of six units and a standalone single storey unit. Five of these are to be used for Class A1 (Non-food retail) purposes and two units are to be used for Use Class A1 (Non-food retail or sandwich shop) and/or Class A3 and A5. The adjacent offices are to be retained.

The scheme also includes the creation of a car park with 183 spaces and new access from Earl Road, together with landscaping and associated works.

Orbit's site currently contains two large warehouses and a smaller office building, built in the 1970s, and scrubland. It is bounded to the west by the John Lewis distribution centre and to the east is the vacant site which Consolidated Property Group have submitted plans for Phase Two and Three of a retail and leisure development comprising of retail units, cafes and restaurants, a gym and a hotel. Phase One of this development is now complete with a Next fashion and homeware store having opened last month.

Much of the proposed site already has planning consent for an office development but Orbit says this has not come to fruition due to a lack of demand.

The latest application is a resubmission of planning application 15/0400M which was refused by Cheshire East Council's Strategic Planning Board in February 2016 on the grounds that the loss of employment land is considered to significantly outweigh the benefits of the proposal.

Orbit Developments have also appealed against the refusal of the previous scheme (reference 15/0400M) for five retail units and two restaurants, cafes or takeaways along with 240 car parking spaces - claiming that the scheme is an acceptable form of land use in a sustainable location which will deliver significant benefit to the local economy and local employment prospects.

The planning application can be viewed on the Cheshire East Council website by searching for planning reference 16/5678M. The deadline for submitting comments is 5th January and a decision is expected to be made by 17th February.

The application is scheduled to be considered by the Strategic Planning Committee at their meeting on 22nd January 2017.

Images: Revised scheme and the previous scheme which was refused in February 2016.

Handforth Dean, Orbit Developments, Planning Applications


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

Lynne Prescott
Wednesday 14th December 2016 at 2:18 pm
I have no objection to further retail development here ( God Knows its better than empty offices, but as others have already said, why not housing instead of using up greenfield sites?

But I'm worried about the access at Earl Road as that set of traffic lights by B&Q is already a bottleneck without the additional traffic these units will bring. I cannot see anything in the proposal to improve access out to the A34 and foresee gridlock in the local area as a result.

Also let us not forget Cheshire Easts plans for c3000 extra uses around this part of the A34, all without any regard to improving the current A34 into the M60 and Manchester itself. I think the current workings on SEMM , which have significantly slowed traffic flow on A34 and moved traffic onto other smaller roads (like Adlington Road and Dean Row Road), which are also now congested at key travel times, is just a foretaste of what travel will be like for Wilmslow and Handforth residents in the future.
As someone living in Handforth and working from home, I have already learned not to use local roads from about 4,00pm onwards!
Rick Andrews
Wednesday 14th December 2016 at 2:51 pm
Access roads are completely inadequate already - this will just compound the problem. It is already a challenge to access the B&Q site at weekends - this should be opposed unless the direct access to the Handforth Dean service road by the new Next store is opened up - as was originally envisaged. Seems ironic that at the same time shops in wilmslow centre are being converted to offices - with no extra parking provided. Oh, I forgot, Cheshire East makes it up as they go along depending on spurious cases made by developers and inflated egos. Let's vote for change and get rid of the incompetence.
Gordon Hyslop
Wednesday 14th December 2016 at 4:15 pm
These greedy developers don't give a dam about the local community and Cheshire East council are frankly not fit for purpose not caring for our area as it's on the far flung edge of their boundary. This Stanley Green retail park was developed on the back of the A34 bypass and no proper access road was considered, we now have the new Next store with a entry exit to a mini roundabout again not properly considered in the original or upgrade road planning. To add further retail units attracting even more punters will only add to an already congested road system which will be compounded by the extended A555 making it easier to access from the A6 Hazel Grove and High Lane area. So let's kick these developers into orbit and hope they stay there
Simon Worthington
Thursday 15th December 2016 at 7:36 am
As most of the remaining fields north of the 900 houses being chucked up at the old aerodrome have now been earmarked by GMC for hugely profitable (for some) housing in the not too distant future there will be several thousand extra vehicle movements per day. The morning and evening jams will stretch from Woodford to the A6 in Stockport - far worse than when the site provided 2-3000 jobs. Of course GMC (even greedier than Cheshire East) has plans for more jobs!!! but no school, doctors, dentists, buses etc etc.
Lynne Prescott
Thursday 15th December 2016 at 9:15 am
What no Ryan?
Ryan Dance
Thursday 15th December 2016 at 9:42 pm
Lynne - try alleviating the traffic issue by driving less. You are the traffic along with the rest of us

Rick - allot of people make things up. The access roads are not inadequate. The council could widen them ...10 years later after a zillion public consultations and a plethora of lushly named coloured may happen (china will have built an airport while we decide to widen an access road)

Gordon - most business operate to make a profit. It's simple economics. Do you work for a salary? Or do live off the land and work for free? Do you own a home? Have you ever sold one for a profit? Climbed the housing ladder?i mean lucrative pension funds exist based on money pyramids don't they?

Simon - for once you have point. The housing should happen but only on conditional permission. With regards to traffic jams. Try cycling to work or taking public transport. Practice what you preach and all that
Friday 16th December 2016 at 9:07 am
Morning Ryan,

What I object to is a) defining "affordable" in the context of the million pound houses that are being sold; b) Cramming social housing into corners of estates without adequate parking and no pavements. Maybe, that is because I remember when Council Houses had defined sizes for rooms, gardens etc - because Councils wanted to improve the quality of life for the many rather than the few. What it comes down to is that there has to be a balance between "what developers want" (large untouched green fields which are easy to build on), and what society "needs". I was struck recently when going round a new estate that the original "Wythenshawe Garden City" had higher standards of space, light and amenity than the one I was currently looking at.
Simon Worthington
Saturday 17th December 2016 at 9:00 am
My observations on the increase in traffic having lived in the vicinity all my life and seen the continuing erosion of greenery to fill the pockets of landowners and constructors of cheaply built houses (the original Summerfields is a prime example) are borne out of my increasingly infrequent journeys. Along with many others I now do not go to certain places at certain times; some I avoid completely eg. Tesco and M & S.
However Ryan, I walk to work!! And the pub. And Sainsburys.
Ryan Dance
Saturday 17th December 2016 at 1:14 pm
Jackie - we need houses of all kinds. The population is burgeoning and we simply don't build enough houses of any sort. Regarding 1 million pound houses. what! If they sell
I'm not really sure why you get so animated or obsessed about the value.

I suspect you would object to houses of any value.
Gordon Hyslop
Thursday 22nd December 2016 at 12:25 pm
Gordon - most business operate to make a profit. It's simple economics. Do you work for a salary? Or do live off the land and work for free? Do you own a home? Have you ever sold one for a profit? Climbed the housing ladder? i mean lucrative pension funds exist based on money pyramids don't they?

So Ryan, based on sheer greed we should allow the developer to ride rough shod over the best interest of the local community? This industrial estate's, that became a retail park on the back of the A34 By-Pass and A555, road structure was never up graded to facilitate the huge increase in traffic. So allow this additional development but, force these greedy developers to improve the roads to facilitate the additional vehicles, this is what happened to JL, Sainsburys. M&S and Tesco who contributed to the A34 By-Pass.

P.S. What is your position at Orbit?