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Carterton is hoping for a trade lift with Morrisons
BUSINESS leaders hope a new Morrisons which could open in Carterton next year will spur more investment.
The retail giant has submitted an application to build the 40,000 sq ft store in the old market site off Black Bourton Road.
If planning permission is granted, work will start in the New Year with new store opening nine months later.
Morrisons said the development would create 200 new jobs.
Carterton Chamber of Trade chairman Phil Scott said he hoped the move would encourage more traders to set up in the town.
He said: “Carterton needs more retailers and this is another step in the right direction. It shows a lot of faith in the town.
“Now the big boys have started getting interested, I think others will follow.”
Mr Scott said he thought the expansion of RAF Brize Norton after the closure of RAF Lyneham in Wiltshire last September may have influenced the plan.
He added: “Carterton is a growing and vibrant place and the expansion of RAF Brize Norton has brought a lot of people here.
“Morrisons obviously looked at the demographic of Carterton and realised it was growing and wanted to be part of it.”
Carterton mayor Adrian Coomber said: “I am sure there will be points of detail that we will wish to discuss with Morrisons but the submission of the planning application is a very welcome step towards the regeneration of the town centre.”
Morrisons has had a “long-standing interest” in Carterton and conducted a public exhibition to discuss the plans in December.
Following the discussions, the retailer altered its plans so that it now includes creating 11 homes with parking to the north of Butlers Drive.
It also added a second storey to the Black Bourton Road frontage to establish a “landmark feature” and increase the car park from 200 spaces to 219.
The retailer also “extensively” upgraded the store’s design, incl-uding the materials used, to help it better complement the town.
West Oxfordshire District Council will decide on the planning application.