Tesco battle rages in Ballycastle

THE battle is raging over whether or not a Tesco store will come to Leyland Road in Ballycastle and planners say the debate has attracted a huge response, writes Nevin Farrell.

A Department of Environment spokesman said the Planning Service has received a bulging post bag.

Speaking to the Times in recent days they said the total responses received, by that stage, in support of the application included 1,033 individual letters and two petitions of support which consisted of a total of 829 names.

And against the Leyland Road site there were 39 individual letters and two petitions of objection which consisted of a total of 3,045 names.

The DoE spokesman said: “Whilst the initial neighbour notification and advertisement period has expired, comments received after the expiry date which are planning matters and which are ‘material considerations’ will be considered along with all other relevant matters in forming the opinion on the application up until a decision is reached.

“The application is still under consideration,” said the spokesman.

No date has been given for when an announcement is likely to be made.

* In a late development, Independent councillor Seamus Blaney said he is considering calling a public “show of strength” at Sheskburn House to outline how many people in Ballycastle and the surrounding areas want Tesco to come to Leyland Road.

And he said the Chamber of Commerce should consider calling people out for a similar opposition rally “and then we will see who has the most support”, added Cllr Blaney.