Service station jobs plan ‘will hit green belt land’

wet. The new Moto service station in Wetherby. GS1209082c.
wet. The new Moto service station in Wetherby. GS1209082c.
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Doncaster could be set for a jobs boost under plans to develop a new motorway service station on fields next the A1(M).

The operator Moto has asked Doncaster Council to give it feedback on proposals for the development, which would be at junction 37.

But the scheme will involve developing on a large area of greenfield land between Marr and Scawsby if it proceeds, and is set to be opposed by local ward councillors.

A letter from the firm’s agents, Collins and Coward Planning and Development Consultancy, to the authority’s principal planning officer Mel Roberts, outlines the firm’s plans.

It states: “Moto is a leading provider of roadside services on the UK’s motorway network and trunk road network. Moto is seeking to extend its network of MSAs through the provision of a new service area at junction 37 of the A1(M) motorway.”

The site is currently used as farmland, and lies to the east of the motorway, just to the north of Barnsley Road.

The proposed site would include:

* A 4,000ft amenity building

* A petrol filling station with forecourt building

* A two-storey lodge hotel with 100 bedrooms

* Parking for 444 cars and 95 lorries

The firm says there will be a full ecological study carried out, which would form part of the planning application when it is submitted, along with surveys into issues such as noise, landscape impact and traffic.

But Doncaster Council ward member for the area, Coun Jonathan Wood, said he and fellow Conservative Coun Cynthia Ransome would be opposing the scheme, because they regarded the site as green belt land.

He said: “The green belt has served us well and should be retained. This is utterly inappropriate in our view.

“We’d be concerned how this affected people locally.”

No details of the number of jobs that would be created if the scheme gets the green light from Doncaster Council planners have yet been revealed by Moto.

But the firm’s website states: “Each of our service areas is a massive business in its own right.

“Under one roof we boast the likes of big brand retail outlets, including Marks & Spencer Simply Food, WH Smith, Burger King, Costa Coffee, Greggs, West Cornwall Pasty, Upper Crust, BP and ESSO.”

The whole scheme would occupy around 12 hectares of greenfield land if it gets the go-ahead.