Another council set to oppose shopping plan

THE proposed out-of-town Rushden Lakes shopping complex will have a detrimental impact on Kettering, according to the borough’s council as it becomes the latest group to oppose the plan.

Kettering Council is set to follow in the footsteps of Corby Council by formally objecting to the development next week, with Northampton Council also expected to officially object to the scheme on Tuesday.

The scheme for the former Skew Bridge site off the A45 near Rushden could include 20 shops, a hotel, restaurants, a garden centre and a visitor centre.

Kettering Council leader Russell Roberts said: “The development will have a sustained and detrimental impact on Kettering.

“It’s against the Core Spatial Strategy, it goes against the Mary Portas review, and it goes against what the Government have been saying about out-of-town developments.

“Here in Kettering, we’ve worked hard and now we’ve got a company in Ellandi who are investing money into the Newlands Centre and they have played by the rules.

“If somebody comes in and breaks the rules, there are bound to be businesses and councils that are unhappy.”

The council has also said it will attempt to get the planning application called in to the Government so that ministerial officials can decide its outcome.

The £50m development, which is being put forward by LXB Retail Properties, is set to create more than 1,500 jobs.

Neighbouring councils have been asked their views on the plan, which has been submitted to East Northamptonshire Council and is expected to be discussed later this year.

Neil Griffin, manager of the Newlands Centre in Kettering, said: “It has been said that it’s sour grapes from the people opposing it.

“But it will affect all of the towns in the area if it goes through, not just Kettering.”