New Aldi supermarket in Sheffield “will create 170 local jobs”

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A new Aldi supermarket in Hillsborough, Sheffield will create around 170 jobs for local people, the firm has pledged.

The supermarket firm’s real estate director Mark Stringer told a meeting of Sheffield City Council’s planning committee yesterday (July 9): “We are creating 170 jobs as part of a multi-million-pound investment. We are trying to do it as soon as possible.”

The proposal involves offering jobs and training to local people, with Aldi working collaboratively with council-backed employment initiative Talent Sheffield.

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The committee approved a two-stage plan for the plot of vacant land at the junction with Herries Road, Herries Road South and Penistone Road North. They granted full permission for Aldi to build a supermarket with 1,899 square metres of floorspace, plus associated access roads, parking, a servicing area and landscaping.

An image of the main entrance to the new Aldi supermarket in Hillsborough that has been agreed by Sheffield City Council's planning committee. Picture: Sheffield City CouncilAn image of the main entrance to the new Aldi supermarket in Hillsborough that has been agreed by Sheffield City Council's planning committee. Picture: Sheffield City Council
An image of the main entrance to the new Aldi supermarket in Hillsborough that has been agreed by Sheffield City Council's planning committee. Picture: Sheffield City Council

The outline plan for the rest of the five-hectare site involves two flexible-use units for storage and distribution or a trade counter and builder’s merchants, two drive-through restaurants, one drive-through coffee shop, one retail unit, a flexible-use trade or retail unit and an electric vehicle charging hub.

Mr Stringer said that approving this plan will finally see the redevelopment of a site that gives a poor impression of the area. He said that the scheme has been tailored to local market demands.

Viability

He explained that Aldi had been set to take over a supermarket that was proposed as part of a previous planning application for the site that was approved by the council in September 2021.

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An overview of the site for a new Aldi store and other retail development on land in Hillsborough, Sheffield that have been approved by Sheffield City Council's planning committee. Picture: Sheffield City CouncilAn overview of the site for a new Aldi store and other retail development on land in Hillsborough, Sheffield that have been approved by Sheffield City Council's planning committee. Picture: Sheffield City Council
An overview of the site for a new Aldi store and other retail development on land in Hillsborough, Sheffield that have been approved by Sheffield City Council's planning committee. Picture: Sheffield City Council

“Aldi was lined up to operate it but viability constraints meant the developer couldn’t afford to build it. Aldi acquired it from the developer earlier this year,” he told the committee.

Mr Stringer said that Aldi had given the council all the land required for walking and cycling improvements for the active travel corridor on Penistone Road. He said that the firm has responded to concerns over cycling and active travel and has done everything it was asked to by Active Travel England.

Two objectors to the scheme who also spoke at the meeting outlined their worries over road safety and the future of active travel and cycling plans. In total, 129 objections were received, many relating to cycling and highways issues.

A Sheffield City Council image of the cycleway on Penistone Road, Hillsborough that will be improved as part of plans approved for a new Aldi supermarket and other retail units. Picture: Sheffield City CouncilA Sheffield City Council image of the cycleway on Penistone Road, Hillsborough that will be improved as part of plans approved for a new Aldi supermarket and other retail units. Picture: Sheffield City Council
A Sheffield City Council image of the cycleway on Penistone Road, Hillsborough that will be improved as part of plans approved for a new Aldi supermarket and other retail units. Picture: Sheffield City Council

Former town planner Simon Ogden called for a “good quality, continuous cycleway along the whole of the Penistone Road frontage” of the new shop. He said that road safety could be improved if the main access road for delivery vehicles could be relocated from the main entrance on Penistone Road to Herries Road, diverting heavy lorries away from an important cycle route.

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Mr Ogden said that Penistone Road is a key part of the national cycle network, linked to the Upper Don Trail from Stocksbridge. He said that the Penistone Road section is currently “substandard and dangerous” with 30 uncontrolled crossings.

Speed

Simon Keller, chair of the Friends of the Trans Pennine Trail, said that improvements have been made to the plan but it could still be better. He said that the slip road from Penistone Road to the supermarket could potentially encourage drivers to speed on to the site because a car is behind them.

Plans submitted to Sheffield City Council for a new Aldi supermarket (top, in blue) and other retails units on land in Hillsborough. Vehicle movements are shown by blue lines and pedestrian areas by purple linesPlans submitted to Sheffield City Council for a new Aldi supermarket (top, in blue) and other retails units on land in Hillsborough. Vehicle movements are shown by blue lines and pedestrian areas by purple lines
Plans submitted to Sheffield City Council for a new Aldi supermarket (top, in blue) and other retails units on land in Hillsborough. Vehicle movements are shown by blue lines and pedestrian areas by purple lines

A report to the committee said that highways measures that have to be carried out or agreed with the council before building can start include a resurfaced 5.5-metre wide segregated footway/cycleway along the A61 frontage to the site. There must also be improvements to two bus stops on Penistone Road and Penistone Road North, to include tactile paving and a bus shelter with real-time bus arrival information.

Planning officer Andrew Burton said: “It’s going to be a significant benefit in terms of the land we’re going to be able to secure from the site frontage. It’s in a pretty sorry state this cycle route on the frontage at the present time.”

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Stocksbridge and Upper Don ward councillor Mark Whittaker said that developments in Stocksbridge have put a lot of pressure on roads. “We desperately want to encourage a cycling route at speed from Stocksbridge into town. This trail is that route.

“We’re not wanting some sort of stop-start, stop-start thing that a kid on a trike can go on. People have to be able to go at speed .”

‘Dangerous’

Coun Brian Holmshaw called the entry to the site “a dangerous mess” because drivers would find it easy to speed in and out across the cycle path. He asked why there was no controlled crossing.

Both he and fellow Green councillor Marieanne Elliot voted against the scheme.

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A highways officer explained that the guidelines they have to follow did not allow for a Belisha beacon-style crossing point. He said that there is a pedestrian island at the centre of the entrance road to allow safer crossing by pedestrians and cyclists.

The report to the committee said that an independent road safety audit found no problems with the slip road junction design. Further safety audits will follow, the highways officer told the committee.

Coun Gary Weatherall said the plan is “very welcome,” adding: “It’s a shame that boots aren’t on the ground yet. The 170 jobs aren’t to be sniffed at.”

Coun Nighat Basharat said: “I think it’s a great opportunity from the employment point of view. I’m satisfied with highways answers in terms of how it’s going to be on the safety measures and how that’s going to be looked into.”

The supermarket will be allowed to open from 8am to 10pm Monday to Saturday and 10am to 4pm on Sunday.