PLANS have been approved by South Gloucestershire council for Aldi to join B&Q at its site in Yate.

The newly published plans show an agreement has been reached with B&Q for it to remain in the building, trading from a reduced floorspace, with Aldi taking unit A and B&Q retaining unit B.

Proposals were finally agreed after the original application – which would have seen B&Q close – was rejected following a number of objections from Yate Town Council, the shopping centre and local residents.

In their statement, Yate Town Councillors said they objected as taking away B&Q would cause a “loss of diversity within the town centre” and they had concerns over the extra traffic, as well as how the locals could suffer with the removal of the only large DIY outlet in the area. South Gloucestershire Council received 10 written objections in response to the the first application with only two supporting comments for the plans.

However, in response to the revised application, which will see the DIY store retain almost half its existing floor space, objections dropped to just six, with 26 comments being received in support of new plans.

B&Q currently has the lease for the entire the site, which is up for renewal this year, and is currently operating under planning permission granted in July 1985 for a DIY store and garden centre totalling 3,681 square metres.

In their list of conditions for the new application, council officers stated that unit A – the Aldi – should be restricted to a sales area of 1,310 square metres for convenience goods, with up to a maximum of 262 square metres being for the sale of ‘comparison goods’ which is the kind of item you find it Aldi’s middle aisles, such as microwaves and gardening kit. Unit B will be restricted to DIY sales.

All planning applications for the site since 1985, to allow the sale of items other than DIY or garden products, have been rejected by the council or withdrawn by the applicant, until now.

The building will now be divided and use of part of unit A will be a Food and non-food store with Unit B to be retained as DIY and garden centre

The applicant Harmsworth Pension Funds Trustees Limited had the proposal agreed on Friday, February 5 with conditions under delegated powers, the senior committee at South Gloucestershire council were not required for the final decision.