Lidl vs Aldi as Sheffield and Rotherham have a battle of the bargain supermarkets
It’s the battle of the bargain supermarkets.
In one corner is Sheffield with plans for a new Lidl. And in the other corner – less than two miles away – is Rotherham which wants to open an Aldi.
Sheffield councillors will next week decide whether a new Lidl can be built on part of Dore House industrial estate, at the junction of Rotherham Road and Orgreave Road at Handsworth.
The Lidl application prompted Rotherham Council to reveal it has earmarked a supermarket unit at the upcoming development at Waverley for an Aldi.
The new £50m town centre, dubbed Olive Lane, aims to provide a new high street for the growing population of Waverley, at the site of the former Orgreave Colliery and Coking Works.
When complete, the site will include shops, a gym, offices, restaurants and cafes, a supermarket, a medical centre, community space, a bus station and homes.
It wasn’t known which supermarket would take up a large unit on the site until Rotherham Council objected to the Lidl plans.
Lidl versus Aldi
Rotherham argues that Lidl should update its impact assessment to consider the effect on indicative local centres at Waverley.
But Lidl argues that a discount food supermarket ‘appears to have been earmarked by Aldi’ at Waverley and the site had not been marketed as being available.
It says it looked at 10 other sites, including Swallownest in Rotherham, but none were suitable so it chose Handsworth.
From Sheffield’s point of view it has a site ready to go, a planning application due to be decided and promises from Lidl that it can start work on the new store immediately.
While the supermarkets and councils wrangle, Handsworth residents are fed up.
There have been 25 objections that a new supermarket is ‘totally unnecessary’ and serious concerns about traffic, road safety and air pollution on the already busy Rotherham Road.
Residents say they don’t want any more supermarkets at all – the existing Aldi and Asda in Handsworth, Morrisons at Catcliffe and Aldi at Swallownest are enough.
Officers are advising Sheffield councillors to approve the new Lidl at a meeting on Tuesday, January 18.