Inquiry over Sports Direct plan for store

Inquiry over Sports Direct plan for store

Inquiry over Sports Direct plan for store

First published in News
Last updated

A PLANNING inquiry over whether a sports retailer can adapt the former Megabowl site will take place later this year after the firm and the site’s owner appealed a decision to block planning permission for the store.

SportsDirect is hoping to move its Newport Retail Park store into the vacant former bowling alley in Spytty nearby, but had its joint planning with Johnsey Estates turned down by Newport council planning officers.

Officers had decided that the proposals would significantly harm the vitality and viability of Newport city centre.

This was despite the company saying the new mixed leisure and retail outfit would have created 150 new jobs.

Planning officers made the decision despite Newport council having lost an appeal over the Megabowl in 2008 after it turned down an application for mixed leisure and retail use.

Sports Direct and Johnsey Estates applied for permission for the retailer to move the store, incorporating a gym and possibly Home Bargains. One big objector to the plans was Queensberry Real Estate, the developer of the city centre Friars Walk scheme.

The firm, which is in the midsts of building the new city centre redevelopment, claimed that the applicant had inaccurately tested whether different city retail sites could accommodate Sports Direct.

Sports Direct previously said that the new store would have been one of the largest units used by the firm, occupying a building that has been otherwise vacant for the last nine years.

In March this year, the Argus reported how the sports firm had said it was disappointed with the refusal.

A spokeswoman for the company had said: “Our intention with this unit would have been to invest around £5 million to create a 35,000 sq ft retail unit, together with a 20,000 sq ft gym – a proposition which would have created 150 full and part-time jobs”.

But Newport council officers argued the proposals would cause “significant harm to interests of acknowledged importance, namely the vitality and viability of the sequentially preferable city centre,

The inquiry will be held on November 5 and 6.

Comments (24)

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6:54am Tue 8 Jul 14

bodlondon says...

Queensbury frightened of competition from Sports Direct?
Guess you can imagine the calibre of stores that will occupy the new shopping centre then.....
Queensbury frightened of competition from Sports Direct? Guess you can imagine the calibre of stores that will occupy the new shopping centre then..... bodlondon
  • Score: 13

7:08am Tue 8 Jul 14

bobmech1 says...

How can Newport councils planning dept be judging on who opens shows and where in Newport when the council is funding the building of Friars Walk?
If course there going to resist any other planning applications they need to have full occupancy of Friars Walk to recoup the money they have borrowed.
Something doesn't seem right there
How can Newport councils planning dept be judging on who opens shows and where in Newport when the council is funding the building of Friars Walk? If course there going to resist any other planning applications they need to have full occupancy of Friars Walk to recoup the money they have borrowed. Something doesn't seem right there bobmech1
  • Score: 16

8:16am Tue 8 Jul 14

Magor says...

Are they building a gym in Friars Walk? I don't think so,whats the problem with one at Spytty? They should have stopped the likes of M&S moving not a gym.
Are they building a gym in Friars Walk? I don't think so,whats the problem with one at Spytty? They should have stopped the likes of M&S moving not a gym. Magor
  • Score: 35

8:49am Tue 8 Jul 14

inkyskin says...

Estate dwellers have to get their tracky bottoms from somewhere!
Estate dwellers have to get their tracky bottoms from somewhere! inkyskin
  • Score: 2

8:57am Tue 8 Jul 14

charlie, newport says...

There's plenty of empty shops in the city centre for Sports Direct to move into, excluding Friars Walk. How about the old Post Office building with the gym part in the old nightclub above.?
There's plenty of empty shops in the city centre for Sports Direct to move into, excluding Friars Walk. How about the old Post Office building with the gym part in the old nightclub above.? charlie, newport
  • Score: 11

9:57am Tue 8 Jul 14

sooty001 says...

inkyskin wrote:
Estate dwellers have to get their tracky bottoms from somewhere!
A rather uncalled for and inane comment.
[quote][p][bold]inkyskin[/bold] wrote: Estate dwellers have to get their tracky bottoms from somewhere![/p][/quote]A rather uncalled for and inane comment. sooty001
  • Score: 21

11:58am Tue 8 Jul 14

Sing up for the amber boys says...

Exactly the right decision at a time when we are looking forward to a more prosperous city centre. Besides which, we don't need another gym - there's plenty of others already
Exactly the right decision at a time when we are looking forward to a more prosperous city centre. Besides which, we don't need another gym - there's plenty of others already Sing up for the amber boys
  • Score: 2

12:23pm Tue 8 Jul 14

Jack Land says...

Why don't they turn it into a centre full of things to do for youngsters? N indoor bike ramp/ skateboard park ( say alternate the days between bikes and skateboards) a few bowling lanes, reinstate the zap zone, a non-alcoholic bar/ coffee bar, local schools could offer free membership as incentives for good behaviour, doing homework on time over a term etc etc, achievable goals that give positive reinforcement that reward the good kids and give the not so good kids something to aim at. I'm not daft enough to think it would be cheap to do BUT with the relevant grants, waiver of rates by the council, sponsorship from local businesses? and the community on board, there's no reason why it wouldn't work.



And it's a **** site better than yet another bloody track suit shop.
Why don't they turn it into a centre full of things to do for youngsters? N indoor bike ramp/ skateboard park ( say alternate the days between bikes and skateboards) a few bowling lanes, reinstate the zap zone, a non-alcoholic bar/ coffee bar, local schools could offer free membership as incentives for good behaviour, doing homework on time over a term etc etc, achievable goals that give positive reinforcement that reward the good kids and give the not so good kids something to aim at. I'm not daft enough to think it would be cheap to do BUT with the relevant grants, waiver of rates by the council, sponsorship from local businesses? and the community on board, there's no reason why it wouldn't work. And it's a **** site better than yet another bloody track suit shop. Jack Land
  • Score: 28

1:47pm Tue 8 Jul 14

Explainitplease says...

Its not Sports Direct and their gym Friars Walk need to worry about. Its the other shops on the Spytty development and its free parking.

Newport City centre has been left to rot. Some enterprising folk decided to develop Spytty and get some pretty big hitters involved and decided not to charge for parking. Its packed every single day.

This is the fault of management of the City, and the way in which it is run.

A shiny shopping centre will make no difference to the mentality of the people or the management of Newport City Centre.
Its not Sports Direct and their gym Friars Walk need to worry about. Its the other shops on the Spytty development and its free parking. Newport City centre has been left to rot. Some enterprising folk decided to develop Spytty and get some pretty big hitters involved and decided not to charge for parking. Its packed every single day. This is the fault of management of the City, and the way in which it is run. A shiny shopping centre will make no difference to the mentality of the people or the management of Newport City Centre. Explainitplease
  • Score: 8

1:56pm Tue 8 Jul 14

Port0214 says...

The clown council never fail on the comedy front, horse stable bolted.

Who in their right mind who runs a for profit business would consider the town centre to be a preferable location? Having already lost one appeal they are going to lose another one and who picks up the bill, yes me and you

The N****** retail park has been a resounding success it provides many jobs and a very good shopping experience something the city centre will probably never do.
The clown council never fail on the comedy front, horse stable bolted. Who in their right mind who runs a for profit business would consider the town centre to be a preferable location? Having already lost one appeal they are going to lose another one and who picks up the bill, yes me and you The N****** retail park has been a resounding success it provides many jobs and a very good shopping experience something the city centre will probably never do. Port0214
  • Score: -5

2:00pm Tue 8 Jul 14

Port0214 says...

sooty001 wrote:
inkyskin wrote:
Estate dwellers have to get their tracky bottoms from somewhere!
A rather uncalled for and inane comment.
I agree the one over the retail is ace, with Iceland next door I can get the look and the lifestyle all in one easy waddle.
[quote][p][bold]sooty001[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]inkyskin[/bold] wrote: Estate dwellers have to get their tracky bottoms from somewhere![/p][/quote]A rather uncalled for and inane comment.[/p][/quote]I agree the one over the retail is ace, with Iceland next door I can get the look and the lifestyle all in one easy waddle. Port0214
  • Score: 7

2:11pm Tue 8 Jul 14

DavidMclean says...

What do we need a large sports retailer for?

With the council firmly committed to getting rid of all our parks and outdoor leisure facilities, as well as making Newport as cycling UNfriendly as possible, surely what we need are more shops selling video games and other stuff to ensure we never leave the house and all die of heart attacks?
What do we need a large sports retailer for? With the council firmly committed to getting rid of all our parks and outdoor leisure facilities, as well as making Newport as cycling UNfriendly as possible, surely what we need are more shops selling video games and other stuff to ensure we never leave the house and all die of heart attacks? DavidMclean
  • Score: -4

2:27pm Tue 8 Jul 14

Eddy10 says...

Charlie
Sportsdirect has already had two separate units in the town centre that took decent money until the rent got put up so left, they also got offered bigger units but the rent was extortionate for a dying city centre. This development over spytty would be in the top 5 largest stores in the Business in the UK.
Charlie Sportsdirect has already had two separate units in the town centre that took decent money until the rent got put up so left, they also got offered bigger units but the rent was extortionate for a dying city centre. This development over spytty would be in the top 5 largest stores in the Business in the UK. Eddy10
  • Score: 6

3:01pm Tue 8 Jul 14

pbhj says...

>"Officers had decided that the proposals would significantly harm the vitality and viability of Newport city centre. " //

The citing of the Spytty retail park is what's harmed the vitality and viability of Newport city centre. It's wrong to take it out on a particular retailer. Unfortunately in allowing this new city centre to be built in the first place Newport planners already made our bed, now we have to sleep in it.

It seems there is no way that picking on an individual business could be allowed like that - all this story makes me think is that the Assembly will over-turn any decision against Sports Direct's plan here and that Sports Direct will probably being suing NCC for a lot of money in the future.
>"Officers had decided that the proposals would significantly harm the vitality and viability of Newport city centre. " // The citing of the Spytty retail park is what's harmed the vitality and viability of Newport city centre. It's wrong to take it out on a particular retailer. Unfortunately in allowing this new city centre to be built in the first place Newport planners already made our bed, now we have to sleep in it. It seems there is no way that picking on an individual business could be allowed like that - all this story makes me think is that the Assembly will over-turn any decision against Sports Direct's plan here and that Sports Direct will probably being suing NCC for a lot of money in the future. pbhj
  • Score: -3

4:02pm Tue 8 Jul 14

inkyskin says...

Jack Land wrote:
Why don't they turn it into a centre full of things to do for youngsters? N indoor bike ramp/ skateboard park ( say alternate the days between bikes and skateboards) a few bowling lanes, reinstate the zap zone, a non-alcoholic bar/ coffee bar, local schools could offer free membership as incentives for good behaviour, doing homework on time over a term etc etc, achievable goals that give positive reinforcement that reward the good kids and give the not so good kids something to aim at. I'm not daft enough to think it would be cheap to do BUT with the relevant grants, waiver of rates by the council, sponsorship from local businesses? and the community on board, there's no reason why it wouldn't work.



And it's a **** site better than yet another bloody track suit shop.
best idea so far! what is there for teens to do these days? oh..go swimming, my daughter can't go swimming as she gets an allergic reaction to chlorine, somewhere fun for teens to go is well needed!
[quote][p][bold]Jack Land[/bold] wrote: Why don't they turn it into a centre full of things to do for youngsters? N indoor bike ramp/ skateboard park ( say alternate the days between bikes and skateboards) a few bowling lanes, reinstate the zap zone, a non-alcoholic bar/ coffee bar, local schools could offer free membership as incentives for good behaviour, doing homework on time over a term etc etc, achievable goals that give positive reinforcement that reward the good kids and give the not so good kids something to aim at. I'm not daft enough to think it would be cheap to do BUT with the relevant grants, waiver of rates by the council, sponsorship from local businesses? and the community on board, there's no reason why it wouldn't work. And it's a **** site better than yet another bloody track suit shop.[/p][/quote]best idea so far! what is there for teens to do these days? oh..go swimming, my daughter can't go swimming as she gets an allergic reaction to chlorine, somewhere fun for teens to go is well needed! inkyskin
  • Score: 6

4:24pm Tue 8 Jul 14

Sing up for the amber boys says...

Anyone who thinks that Spytty Retail Park is the future of Newport, is either small minded, lives near it or both
Anyone who thinks that Spytty Retail Park is the future of Newport, is either small minded, lives near it or both Sing up for the amber boys
  • Score: 6

8:17pm Tue 8 Jul 14

Dave on his Soapbox says...

....typical of the council to make decisions to suit it's own ends....some years ago it refused planning permission for a model shop on Caerleon Road because they weren't in keeping with the local environment...and despite the shop having been broken into.....its own planning report under the heading of security stated none....so permission was refused......then within weeks it granted itself permission to erect those illuminated advertising signs on street lamp posts....as it was getting a cut from the firm selling advert space.

For decades the council have followed guidelines and allowed out of town shopping.....which has slowly killed the town centre.....now that many of these site are doing better than the centre.....they look to preserve their self interest....and loan they took out to get it built.
....typical of the council to make decisions to suit it's own ends....some years ago it refused planning permission for a model shop on Caerleon Road because they weren't in keeping with the local environment...and despite the shop having been broken into.....its own planning report under the heading of security stated none....so permission was refused......then within weeks it granted itself permission to erect those illuminated advertising signs on street lamp posts....as it was getting a cut from the firm selling advert space. For decades the council have followed guidelines and allowed out of town shopping.....which has slowly killed the town centre.....now that many of these site are doing better than the centre.....they look to preserve their self interest....and loan they took out to get it built. Dave on his Soapbox
  • Score: -5

10:23pm Tue 8 Jul 14

Floppy backed says...

charlie, newport wrote:
There's plenty of empty shops in the city centre for Sports Direct to move into, excluding Friars Walk. How about the old Post Office building with the gym part in the old nightclub above.?
Dow, one big modern building, fire escapes, disabled access, listed building consent, open floor space, dirty pigeons, footfall, access, deliveries, parking on the doorstep these companies do not want to spend half a million on converting buildings - its not their style Sport Direct want that modern park look.

Newport CBC will lose this and it will cost the tax payers. They passed Spytty Park and its where all the main retailers are. There is no argument, complete madness by NCBC. While I am not in favour of these soleless estates of multi carparks its too late now.
[quote][p][bold]charlie, newport[/bold] wrote: There's plenty of empty shops in the city centre for Sports Direct to move into, excluding Friars Walk. How about the old Post Office building with the gym part in the old nightclub above.?[/p][/quote]Dow, one big modern building, fire escapes, disabled access, listed building consent, open floor space, dirty pigeons, footfall, access, deliveries, parking on the doorstep these companies do not want to spend half a million on converting buildings - its not their style Sport Direct want that modern park look. Newport CBC will lose this and it will cost the tax payers. They passed Spytty Park and its where all the main retailers are. There is no argument, complete madness by NCBC. While I am not in favour of these soleless estates of multi carparks its too late now. Floppy backed
  • Score: -1

10:32pm Tue 8 Jul 14

Floppy backed says...

Jack Land wrote:
Why don't they turn it into a centre full of things to do for youngsters? N indoor bike ramp/ skateboard park ( say alternate the days between bikes and skateboards) a few bowling lanes, reinstate the zap zone, a non-alcoholic bar/ coffee bar, local schools could offer free membership as incentives for good behaviour, doing homework on time over a term etc etc, achievable goals that give positive reinforcement that reward the good kids and give the not so good kids something to aim at. I'm not daft enough to think it would be cheap to do BUT with the relevant grants, waiver of rates by the council, sponsorship from local businesses? and the community on board, there's no reason why it wouldn't work.



And it's a **** site better than yet another bloody track suit shop.
nice idea but Johnsey aint going to be impressed with their pittance of a rent are they? Do you have an realistic idea how much these places cost - you'd be lucky to take enough to pay the cleaners, what with the massive insurance indemnities, H&S officers and endless volunteers you would need. Dont forget you need to make money 7 days a week - not 2. Sponsorship only succeeds where there is exposure such as TV. Far too big to consider for a community hub and not somewhere where I would want my children to socialise either before you know it - they'll be popping pills and smoking god knows what. Shame but the chavs have kids that would do everything to ruin a smart community project.
[quote][p][bold]Jack Land[/bold] wrote: Why don't they turn it into a centre full of things to do for youngsters? N indoor bike ramp/ skateboard park ( say alternate the days between bikes and skateboards) a few bowling lanes, reinstate the zap zone, a non-alcoholic bar/ coffee bar, local schools could offer free membership as incentives for good behaviour, doing homework on time over a term etc etc, achievable goals that give positive reinforcement that reward the good kids and give the not so good kids something to aim at. I'm not daft enough to think it would be cheap to do BUT with the relevant grants, waiver of rates by the council, sponsorship from local businesses? and the community on board, there's no reason why it wouldn't work. And it's a **** site better than yet another bloody track suit shop.[/p][/quote]nice idea but Johnsey aint going to be impressed with their pittance of a rent are they? Do you have an realistic idea how much these places cost - you'd be lucky to take enough to pay the cleaners, what with the massive insurance indemnities, H&S officers and endless volunteers you would need. Dont forget you need to make money 7 days a week - not 2. Sponsorship only succeeds where there is exposure such as TV. Far too big to consider for a community hub and not somewhere where I would want my children to socialise either before you know it - they'll be popping pills and smoking god knows what. Shame but the chavs have kids that would do everything to ruin a smart community project. Floppy backed
  • Score: 1

7:34am Wed 9 Jul 14

Bobevans says...

The council are backing a loser with this and just wasting taxpayers money. The area at Spytty park is designated for retail & leisure use and that's what they want to use is for. There is no where in the city centre that would be suitable and large enough for their needs. A city Centre for a Sports store & Gym is also the wrong location
The council are backing a loser with this and just wasting taxpayers money. The area at Spytty park is designated for retail & leisure use and that's what they want to use is for. There is no where in the city centre that would be suitable and large enough for their needs. A city Centre for a Sports store & Gym is also the wrong location Bobevans
  • Score: -1

12:11pm Wed 9 Jul 14

Hevsym says...

Why can't they reopen it as a Bowlplex or bowling alley? As long as they put a company in there that runs it properly. Bowlplex Cwmbran is great and we could really do with one in Newport,
Why can't they reopen it as a Bowlplex or bowling alley? As long as they put a company in there that runs it properly. Bowlplex Cwmbran is great and we could really do with one in Newport, Hevsym
  • Score: 4

1:13pm Wed 9 Jul 14

davidcp says...

Serve them right if SD up sticks and just go. Then NCC get b all.
Serve them right if SD up sticks and just go. Then NCC get b all. davidcp
  • Score: -1

8:42am Thu 10 Jul 14

scraptheWAG says...

charlie, newport wrote:
There's plenty of empty shops in the city centre for Sports Direct to move into, excluding Friars Walk. How about the old Post Office building with the gym part in the old nightclub above.?
no parking i would assume
[quote][p][bold]charlie, newport[/bold] wrote: There's plenty of empty shops in the city centre for Sports Direct to move into, excluding Friars Walk. How about the old Post Office building with the gym part in the old nightclub above.?[/p][/quote]no parking i would assume scraptheWAG
  • Score: 2

5:00pm Thu 10 Jul 14

Limestonecowboy says...

Explainitplease wrote:
Its not Sports Direct and their gym Friars Walk need to worry about. Its the other shops on the Spytty development and its free parking. Newport City centre has been left to rot. Some enterprising folk decided to develop Spytty and get some pretty big hitters involved and decided not to charge for parking. Its packed every single day. This is the fault of management of the City, and the way in which it is run. A shiny shopping centre will make no difference to the mentality of the people or the management of Newport City Centre.
There no such thing as 'free parking' the car park land is paid for through shop rates & passed on in prices to the customer - any city centre will charge for parking & out of town centres may well head this way.
[quote][p][bold]Explainitplease[/bold] wrote: Its not Sports Direct and their gym Friars Walk need to worry about. Its the other shops on the Spytty development and its free parking. Newport City centre has been left to rot. Some enterprising folk decided to develop Spytty and get some pretty big hitters involved and decided not to charge for parking. Its packed every single day. This is the fault of management of the City, and the way in which it is run. A shiny shopping centre will make no difference to the mentality of the people or the management of Newport City Centre.[/p][/quote]There no such thing as 'free parking' the car park land is paid for through shop rates & passed on in prices to the customer - any city centre will charge for parking & out of town centres may well head this way. Limestonecowboy
  • Score: 0

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