Sevenstone pledge from Sheffield council chief Mothersole

Talks: Sheffield Council chief executive John Mothersole
Talks: Sheffield Council chief executive John Mothersole
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STALLED Sheffield city centre retail scheme Sevenstone could be ‘kick-started’ with talks between council chiefs and developer Hammerson.

Sheffield Council chief executive John Mothersole said he hopes to discuss issues, including progress on full planning applications for the scheme.

Sevenstone, planned for the area between Barker’s Pool and The Moor, was put on hold ‘indefinitely’ in 2009 as the economic crisis deepened.

But Mr Mothersole said: “I am seeing Hammerson on January 11 and meeting very senior representatives of the company.

“My hopes are the meeting will see a coming-together of progress made in recent months to kick-start Sevenstone.

“The idea would be to get detailed planning applications in for the different areas of the development. I would like to see significant progress during the course of the year and for construction work to start in 2014.”

An envisaged date for the start of building work has been delayed repeatedly.

Work on Sevenstone was due to begin during 2008, with completion in 2011, but in August 2008 the start date was put back to summer 2009.

Outline planning permission for the scheme, granted in 2008, runs out later this year but Mr Mothersole said it ‘should not be a problem’ to have permission renewed.

Plans have been changed repeatedly and are likely to be smaller than first proposed.

The original scheme was to include a new John Lewis on the site of the old Wellington Street fire station and possibly a flagship Next.

Blocks were to feature unique designs, including one building with a gothic motif inspired by St Mark’s Square, Venice.