Lidl confirm plans for 50% larger 'more modern store'

As revealed on wilmslow.co.uk last week, a discount retailer is planning to demolish a local gym so they can replace it will a new larger store.

Lidl have now confirmed their plans to replace the existing store at Summerfields Village Centre with a new store on the adjacent land, currently occupied by the energi Fitness Club.

The company has agreed a deal to purchase the property currently occupied by energi from Emersons, which will be demolished to build a new store which is nearly 50% bigger, if planning permission is approved.

Lidl UK's Regional Head of Property, Stuart Jardine, commented: "Our current Wilmslow store is extremely popular but is no longer able to meet the needs of our customers. An opportunity has arisen to purchase the property currently occupied by the Energie Fitness Club, which means that we can improve our retail offering in Wilmslow."

Stuart Jardine added: "A new, more modern store will allow us to stock a wider range of products and improve the shopping experience for our customers. The proposed new store is only metres away from the current store, which will result in a smooth transition for our regular customers."

Lidl submitted a planning application to Cheshire East Council on Friday, 23rd June, for a 1655m2 store and if planning permission is granted they say the new store could create up to 20 additional jobs for local people.

All existing employees will transfer to the new store which will include an in-store bakery, longer-style tills with dual packing facilities, customer toilets and more parking.

The existing 1,112m2 store will continue to trade until the new store is open, which is expected to be in early 2019 should the plans be approved, after which the plans indicate it will be demolished to create additional parking spaces for the new store.

The public are invited to view the plans in the current Wilmslow store, from 3rd July.

Some local residents are getting together to fight Lidl's plans to build a larger store saying it will be closer to more homes and result in noise and light pollution, loss of privacy and loss of greenery.

In response to the proposals campaigners are calling on Cheshire East Council to protect the trees on the current energie site, which they say currently shields the existing Lidl from their homes, by placing Tree Preservation Orders (TPO) on them.

Martin Kitchin said "The trees are an asset to the area, a perfect oasis amongst all the brick and tarmac. They have taken years to establish after they were first planted by Emersons. There's a nice mix there. They include Silver Birch which match those on our Jones Homes estate.

"Regardless of the season they are all majestic and beautiful in their own right. They provide residents with privacy (which will be even more needed if a big supermarket is allowed to be built next door to homes) and a natural habitat for birds which is wonderful. We can hear the birds over there now.

"Over the years the energie trees have merged with the shrubs maintained by Emerson on our side of the boundary."

Local resident Paul Roue said "The wildlife which has made its habitat in this area is numerous and varied. It would be such a shame to see it all go. The greenery which enhances this area is much needed and if it was able to be saved then that would make such a difference.

"I have been fortunate to see the redwings in the area and it would be a shame to see them disappear as they are such a rare bird."

Councilllor Barry Burkhill, who represents Handforth, is a member of the Strategic Planning Board, so, given this application is likely to go before the board, he cannot pass any comment on this proposed application

However, he told wilmslow.co.uk " Having said that, I can advise residents and ask for reports so long as I do not pre-judge any application before it comes to committee. I have asked our arboricultural officers to urgently assess the impact of this proposed development on the amenity trees and maturing woodland, which protect the residential area and form a natural habitat for wildlife."

Tags:
Energie Fitness, Lidl
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Comments

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

John Schneider
Monday 26th June 2017 at 1:53 pm
Rather sad that there is no mention of the Leisure Club loss to the community.
The 'alleged' additional Lidl jobs are offset by the loss of leisure/reception/hair salon/osteopathy-physiotherapy/nail bar staff etc
The Leisure Club is a hub for fitness - swimming/weights/zumba/pilates etc and is a vibrant social meeting point.
When fitness is foremost in peoples minds 2017, a proposal is put forward to 'snuff' out a centre that ticks all the health boxes.
The Council should consider a relocation package, whereby the deal could be approved subject to the provision of Leisure facilities on land/site nearby.
Martin Kitchin
Monday 26th June 2017 at 6:34 pm
John Schneider is absolutely right of course !

IF Lidl are successful in getting planning then of course the Energie Gym will be sadly missed by everyone.

Not only by its loyal members but also by neighbours here in the surrounding homes. And what wonderful considerate neighbours Energie have proven to be too.

The gym is staffed by warm people who care, where finess matters. It stands in well maintained lovely mature grounds that blend in perfectly with the homes.

Energie might be classed as 'commercial premises' but as previously stated, as a membership club wthey're as quiet as mice. Commercial retail suoermarket they are not and that's the rub.

But its it's far from over....

As soon as the plans are submitted to Cheshire East by Lidl we will ALL have the chance to comment and influence the outcomes.

So, let's do it and hope that common sense prevails for once....

(1) Lidl stay in a shopping parade in a commercial retail space and not in the middle of homes.

(2) Energie continues to lift many more dumb bells to come in the future.
Gina Thompson
Monday 26th June 2017 at 7:01 pm
I am a member of the gym and regularly shop in Lidl, given a choice I would rather things stay as they are. We have more than enough supermarkets in Wilmslow a larger Lidl will not change my life, the loss if Energi Fitness club will.
Richard Storey
Monday 26th June 2017 at 8:48 pm
How many of the jobs that Lidl intends to create will be full time? And what
about the loss of jobs at the gym?
Steve Kennedy
Monday 26th June 2017 at 10:08 pm
There are lots of suppliers to Energie who will lose out too. I've done their print for about 12 years, we have a great relationship and i'm sure there are other local companies who provide them with services who will miss them too. A chain supermarket will come with their own centralised portfolio of suppliers i'm sure.

The sphere of impact of the loss of this lovely business will grow as more people realise the implications.

I do hope people totally, totally understand this move and dont apply too much pressure on the owners and staff of energie, just let them get on with their job, they know what to do, and its obvious they'll just continue to do what they do so well for them and their members during the planning application process. Carry on and plan, business as usual.

I wish them good luck.
Paul Roue
Tuesday 27th June 2017 at 1:36 am
Lidl has said there will be 20 more jobs created. How many are part time? Is that the number after the loss of all the jobs from the gym? I'm pretty sure that the jobs created will not outweigh the ones lost. That also includes the loss of businesses who are housed within Energie. Some are only small and may not have the finances to relocate.
Sarah Walters
Tuesday 27th June 2017 at 4:55 am
So, 20 additional jobs for Lidl.... what about the 50 that will be lost at Energie?
Mark Russell
Tuesday 27th June 2017 at 8:52 am
I think im missing something here. If the owners of the gym were making so much money, then they wouldn't agree to this idea. I think people need to stop looking through rose tinted glasses in the SK9 area, and realise business's exist to make money, nothing else counts, its the only object at the end of the day. Yes its nice the staff are good etc., but its a consumer market, and with the big gym up the road on the A34, that must supply massive competition. Its sad some local trade,POS etc, will be lost, but again, it would be lost if it went bust. It cant be a viable business or it wouldn't be shutting down. And as for the trees, are we really going to stop progress for some trees? Imagine how many people come to Lidl from outside Wilmslow, it must be a lot for them to want to double there business footprint. I'm sure these "outsiders" will spend money in the area while they are there, may be dinner in the pub, top up their tan. I'm sure the contractor will plant more once they are finished.
Simon Worthington
Tuesday 27th June 2017 at 11:44 am
" business's exist to make money, nothing else counts, its the only object at the end of the day." Wonderful reading. So the law, customers' wellbeing, neighbours, traffic, pollution, nature etc. etc don't count.
Pete's mob wouldn't be flogging the site if he could milk it for more so I suspect he knows something Lidl doesn't. And surprising he is flogging a rent paying site not one of his many empty ones. As for the economics - who says the gym is not a viable business? Lidl is hoping to be a more viable business which certainly won't last when Aldi hit town. Punters from outside Wilmslow at Lidl!! Having dinner in the local pub!! Stand up stuff. They have their own Lidl and Aldis to visit. Even the locals hardly use the local pub and never have. Perhaps the better choice is to knock down the boozer for parking and allow Lidl to build on the existing carpark. I am sure Pete can get round the condition requiring the pub on the site. And while we are at it get shut of that inappropriate car dealer and free up the parking.
Pete Taylor
Tuesday 27th June 2017 at 12:33 pm
@Simon, the pub and the car dealership do seem out of place. I stuck my head in the pub once, when it was about a year old- didn't stay for a drink.
Jackie Pass
Tuesday 27th June 2017 at 3:48 pm
Mark - the gym is on a lease. Depending on its terms it can be ended. It is the freehold which has been sold.

The gym is actually very successful and an asset to the local community - the local community at Summerfields - which has no bank, no post office, no doctors, no dentist and only 1 bus route and soon to have no gym. But it will soon have a very large Lidl, which if it attracts people from outside the area will add to the congestion on Dean Row Road with the traffic backed up to join the A34 and backed up at the roundabout by the Unicorn - and that is before Taylor Wimpey get their way and build another 175 very close to this site - with all the traffic which it will generate, and before East Cheshire NHS reorganises its services and switches obstetrics and midwifery to Colshaw Farm.

Now I appreciate that from the point of view of Lidl - more houses, more people = more profit, But that is not, and cannot be, the overriding factor for the granting of planning permission for what is an "out of town" shopping area.

Finally, if it does get permission - then the whole of the car park will need doing - not just this section. Narrow bays, a road through it which can't take 2 cars passing at the same time in places, car parking spaces permanently occupied by cars for the garage. Whoever designed that car park should hang their head in shame.
Paul Roue
Tuesday 27th June 2017 at 4:32 pm
We'll all be able to comment and have our say as soon as it is formally lodged with Cheshire East and we have a planning reference. I hope we all do.
I take it that someone who commented above doesn't live on the doorstep. Why would you accept that having the larger supermarket in your front garden is better? No, there are not plans to plant any trees, they are all being uprooted and not replaced. That's why we are fighting for tree protection orders. We can then at least hide the warehouse being built next to our homes.
I'm all for business,but isn't it better to not put a supermarket in the middle of housing.
Martin Kitchin
Tuesday 27th June 2017 at 4:46 pm
Simon Worthington makes some very valid points. Thank you.

Yes of course profits are important....it's what makes the economy tick but a balance has to be struck surely?

As Simon says, the store should not be at the expense of noise,, loss of existing jobs at the gym, disturbance to neighbours and the opportunities for a healthier and fitter world..

A careful look at the Lidk plans will show how close the new store will be to existing hones. Siimply wrong

Regardless if how much extra product lines Lidl can get in to a new store, how many more varieties of cheese and chocolate, it's just not worth it When you cinsuder the wider imosct on gyn members and residents .

We uge everybody to provide Cheshire East Planning with your comments as soon as the reference number is known.
Mark Russell
Tuesday 27th June 2017 at 7:28 pm
Oh dear, people really do need to read ones post before the keyboard daggers come out.

Simon, did you read my post properly? I never mentioned that because all business men know that to be factual and have to abide. However after all that is done, if you run at a loss you close. Ps it's also illegal to run a business you know is losing money but that a different story. If the rent went up and the gym was so viable, the owner would pay it. But he has obviously worked out he can't make money, so the adult and moral thing to do is move on. And as you want to shut everything else up there, what would you like in its place? Greengrocer, fish monger?

That brings me onto Jackie. There's a reason all those businesses are not up there, because nobody used them and they shut! Revolution in wilmslow won't shut because it's rammed every weekend. I.e. Makes money.

Martin, Lidl aren't shutting the gym, the owner of the gym is. I would guess if he was making say a million pound a year, this would not be happening. Again, business exists to make money (yes Simon after regulations etc) but regardless all the fluffy stuff business comes out and says, it's about the £.

Neighbours, things change over time. Look at the a34 widening. Can't buy a house next to it then moan when it grows! We should be happy the unit is staying full. Look at wilmslow centre. It's either empty, a coffee shop or a charity shop.

Be careful what you wish for people!
Adam Rhodes
Tuesday 27th June 2017 at 9:13 pm
I'm not sure where the talk of the gym making a loss and wanting to close comes into this. As far as I am aware the gym are just as unhappy about this as the gym members, local residents and others are.

Lidl now own the freehold and are effectively the landlord. They have shown they wish to activate the break clause in the lease to remove the gym from the site - if they get the planning permission.
Martin Kitchin
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 1:42 am
Mark,

Realistically if the new landlord (Lidl) puts the gym (Energie) under the bulldozer and reduces it to ash, then what option do the have but to shut it !?.

The gym unit isn't as you say 'staying full'.

IF Lidl get planning permission to buikd this huge store enbedded by homes on three sidss the present unit is being demolished with an ensuing loss of

- Jobs
- Privacy
- Peace.
- A much loved lesure facility..

That Mark, is the rub for everybody.
Susan Wareing
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 9:55 am
I have lived and used the Energie gym for 14 years and it meets my needs perfectly. I will particularly miss the pool if the gym closes. As an older resident of Wilmslow I appreciate the opportunities to attend excellent classes, such as Pilates, meeting new people and having a motivation to go out and exercise each day.
I use Tesco Handforth Dean for my big weekly shop and Sainsburys for 'top up' items during the week. In both stores (again after 14 years) I have never experienced anything but friendliness and helpfulness from all the staff. I use Waitrose very rarely as find it too expensive. I have tried Lidl but I find the range of goods very restricted. I do not personally feel the need of any more grocery stores in Wilmslow.
Jon Armstrong
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 10:32 am
If the gym signed a lease which said if the freehold was sold their lease could be broken, whose fault is it other than then gym? It's all very well being unhappy about it, but they knew this could happen when they signed up.

On another article on this site, someone is claiming that the gym were still recently subletting units and allowing these subletting people spend thousands fitting them out even though they knew this was going on. The commenter blames Lidl for this, but, if true, it seems dubious behavior on the part of the gym. Or did the subletters know and do it anyway? Again, hardly Lidl's fault.
Ann Adamson
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 6:37 pm
Please can someone tell me what happens regarding the subscriptions paid by the members to the owners of the Energie gym? - (I paid for a year's membership just 3 weeks ago) and I feel sure other members will be asking the same question?.
Lynne Prescott
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 6:42 pm
I second the opinion we should keep the gym - walking distance for many users and that Lidl could expand onto the car park next to them - perhaps with a rear entrance - Just the other day, after living in the area 17 years, I realised that there is underutilised parking BEHIND the Summerfield shops!

And please please, whatever you build, can we at least have a cash machine to replace the one we lost when Tesco took over one-stop- a really obvious miss in this shopping area.
Allan Dawson
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 6:56 pm
Oh that's good..now I won't have to buy those daft multi coloured leggings and top to keep up with fashion shoppers!
Chris Boothman
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 8:24 pm
The Wilmslow Lidl has always been too small and poorly stocked at times, an increase in size is required and will be good for the customers. Excellent news.
Martin Kitchin
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 8:36 pm
Hi Lynne.

There's already a lot of conjecture * in the comments here.

I 'think' at one time ( and it's just that a thought) that Lidl did consider moving their current side storage area (behind the wine and dairy) upstairs above the current store.

This was discounted sadly as it didn't free them up enough retail space.

Pity that isn't it as it would have meant:

(a) minimal disturbance for residents.

(b) Energie would have been left untouched for all its members to continue enjoying.

Of conjecture * we still cannot fathom out why on 27th June that Pete Taylor thought above that the BMW Mini garage was 'out of place' ?

Still no time to ponder on that ! Let's focus efforts on what we can ALL do to keep Energie running.

As soon as Cheshire East register the Lidl planning application for the Energie site, the reference number will be published and we can ALL have a say on its pros and cons.
Martin Kitchin
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 8:54 pm
But not Chris Boothman, is it not "Excellent news" for

(1) residents who could have the bigger store in their back gardens.

(2) gym members who lose their gym.

(3) those losing their jobs and livelihoods at Energie...

And that's the issue really we ALL need to make when the Lidl application is registered at CE

But as for the current Lidl store being "poorly stocked" that's not really fair to say that

Staff work on late after closing times to restock.

Even the management team help out as well.
Heather Godfrey
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 10:08 pm
To lose Energie will be a disaster. It's a small friendly gym which suits the neighbourhood. You also don't even know it's there. Why do we need a larger store? The existing lidle is ok. Just needs more staff at busy times. Dean Row road is already coping with too much traffic and often we are queuing up to get on the A 34. A large store will cause more build up of traffic not to mention pot holes. I hit one this morning. Someone I spoke to today mentioned a petition. Does anyone know about this?
Ryan Dance
Wednesday 28th June 2017 at 11:33 pm
Been using this gym on a regular basis for over 5 years......! Will be sad to see it go! with regards to Lidl......been in once....what a horror show....i wont be going back anytime soon!
Rick Andrews
Thursday 29th June 2017 at 9:59 am
Will be sorry to see the gym go, and everyone has a right to an opinion.

Worrying to read potentially libellous speculation about the state of the gym business. Not at all helpful if based on hearsay and not facts.

What will be , will be.
Martin Kitchin
Thursday 29th June 2017 at 12:20 pm
Hi Heather.

As soon as it gets to Cheshire East Planning it'll get a planning reference.

This means that everybody will get the chance to register their concerns formally.

See my comment above on 28 June 2000hrs

If you want to arrange a petiituin to send to Cheshire East that seems good idea.

Im sure that the Village Mews Residents that surround the gyn (and are also members,) will be pleassed to see it.

Thanks,

Martin
Buster Wild
Thursday 29th June 2017 at 4:18 pm
Hope we will be able to get through the tills at Lidl quicker than as at present. Very slow service. Please put more staff on at busy times, just pop to Aldi's and see how it's done!
Estelle Lewis
Thursday 29th June 2017 at 10:01 pm
Not having used a gym for a l-o-n-g time (with a body to prove it) closing it down won't affect me personally BUT I would like a bigger Lidl and would really like to know what happened to the plans to build another floor on the existing store with an escalator as they have in Tesco. This way everyone will be happy and no one will be made redundant, the trees will not have to be chopped down .......... problem solved
Richard Armstead
Thursday 29th June 2017 at 11:39 pm
Emerson sell the freehold to Lidl and make a profit on their investment. Lidl negotiate the break clause of their lease with Energie and make them an offer they cannot refuse. Energie make a profit on their investment. Lidl open a 24/7 'out of town' supermarket in the middle of a housing community increasing their footfall and make a profit on their investment. The community gets increased pollution, increased traffic congestion, increased stress, less amenity and loses a prime site for social housing. Lets hope the council authorities find the right balance when the Lidl planning application comes before them.
Pete Taylor
Friday 30th June 2017 at 6:55 pm
A cynic, with a long memory, might ask how all these parcels of land finished up going in one direction.
Frankly; I could not comment.
Ginny Dean
Tuesday 4th July 2017 at 9:13 pm
Can anybody tell me how to find out when this plan has been submitted please?
Martin Kitchin
Thursday 6th July 2017 at 7:41 pm
Hi Ginny,

Are you

(a) a resident of the homes which are currently next to Energie through their expansive greenery

or

(b) are you a gym user?

As soon as the plans are registered with Cheshire East and we know the planning reference, I'll make sure it's publicised.

This will mean that everybody will be able to comment on the proposals either as a resident, a Lidl shopper, a gym user or even all three.

What's gratifying is the amount of discussion the Lidl plans have initiated. As at this evening, the article is still the most discussed on the site.

Regards,

Martin Kitchin
Village Mews Residents
Tony Chester
Sunday 9th July 2017 at 9:40 pm
I am mortified that Lidl want to demolish the gym. As a member of this gym, this is the only enjoyment I get outside my working life, it's not "Just a gym", it's a way of life for some people. People are going to lose their businesses, their jobs, it's going to badly effect people's lives, it's a local, friendly place where people meet, to socialise, exercise, and enjoy their time there. It's just pure greed on Lidl to want to build a bigger store. The store they have now is badly run, and a dangerous place for customers. My wife is in a wheelchair, and on a recent visit to Lidl, I just couldn't push the wheelchair down the aisles due to the amount of pallets scattered on the shop floor. There was cages on the shop floor full of cardboard, and boxes blocking the aisles. How anyone could push a wheelchair down the aisles of use shop floor is anyone's guess. And when you tell this to a member of their staff, they just don't seem to care. All they are concerned with is chewing gum and drinking water on the tills, whilst scanning your shopping at such a speed that you can't pack fast enough. Customer service does not exist in this store. So bigger Lidl would be an even bigger nightmare than it is now! Rest assured, when the plans are advertised for this new Lidl, I expect there will be many objections, I personally myself will be objecting to it, and hope it doesn't go ahead.
Martin Kitchin
Monday 10th July 2017 at 11:02 am
Hello Tony Chester,

Still not got the Cheshire East planning reference but as soon as we do we will get it publicised

You will see that the Lidl plans have received an incredible amount of opposition. The article is still the most discussed on the Wilmslow.co website!

This is the opposition...

(1) A popular, much loved and good value leisure facility will bite the dust with the ensuing loss of many jobs and a raft of local businesses that operate within Energie

(2) Lidl will move away from an existing parade of shops to a stand alone store which is 50% bigger with homes cheeck by jowel on all three sides (and all the problems that goes with it)

(a) Noise
(b) Pollution
(c) Delivery trucks
(d) Many more cars and customers than Energie has
(e) Increased traffic on Dean Row when it's blocked now and is a hazard
(f) Waste
(g) Smells
(h) Loss of mature trees
(I) Loss of privacy

Village Mews Residents
Lorraine Smith
Monday 10th July 2017 at 4:19 pm
There is already a large supermarket presence in and around Wilmslow whether it be the A34 superstores (Tesco, Sainsbury, M & S) or Wilmslow itself (Sainsbury, Tesco Express, Waitrose) and then the Summerfields shopping centre area itself.

As a gym user I would be v. sorry to see Energie and its various sublets disappear. We have little enough by way of 'keep fit' facilities that are accessible to a wide range of people and abilities in this area.
To build a superstore in a largely residential area is out of keeping with the community when there are already existing facilities.
In building more and more out of town superstores, Wilmslow and East Cheshire is creating its own problems by way of vacant shops, an increasing number of charity shops which is a downward trend in a town and a lack of a vibrant town centre e.g. Grove Street.

More advice including legal arguments with reference to East Cheshire planning policies in order to mount a coherent and successful approach to lodging a planning objection would be welcome.
Dave Cash
Tuesday 11th July 2017 at 2:16 am
It would appear that Energie may have accepted the Lidl proposed purchase.
There are 3 existing subscription gyms within 2 miles, inc the one approved for St Anne's Parade Wilmslow.
Martin Kitchin
Tuesday 11th July 2017 at 10:50 pm
Hello Dave Cash,

Thanks for the comments.

1. Prior Knowledge:

We've got evidence to the contrary that Energie 'may have accepted the Lidl proposed purchase'.

Check with their management of course but we understand that the first Energie knew was when told that Lidl had acquired the lease from Emerson and were effectively their new owners.


2. The Energie Benefit:

The benefit of Energie of course is that it's well served by the residents of Summerfields and is an easy walk (or jog) from most people's front doors.

Much healthier and better for the environment than trudging up the increasingly blocked up A34.

And unlike the gym at St Anne's Parade, if you have to drive there's free parking at Energie and shops and a bar to pop to on the way home !


3. Loss of Privacy:

As well as the loss of the gym, there's a risk that residents will also lose the shielding and privacy that the current Energie trees provides.

We took a 'tree inventory' today and you'd be arrived at how many wonderful trees Energie have in their gardens.



4. Planning Application:

The Cheshire East planning reference is about to go live.

We'll make sure it's publicised here for everyone, gym members and residents to comment on.

Watch this space . . .

Kind Regards,


Village Mews Residents and Gym Members.
Heather Godfrey
Wednesday 19th July 2017 at 12:00 pm
I believe the planning application number is 17/3208M as given to me by the planning department today.
Jackie Pass
Wednesday 19th July 2017 at 2:48 pm
Maybe someone should tell the developers of Heathfield Farm that the application has gone in. Having attended their exhibition this week, - which show the proposals - they have the existing gym as providing sport and leisure activities.

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