A Newcastle Emlyn businessman is “disappointed and frustrated” at having to kick his heels over a plan to demolish a former car showroom and build a new supermarket in the town centre.
Kevin Davies of Cawdor Cars was granted outline planning consent some two years ago to develop land off Tanyard Lane but now that he is ready to proceed has come up against problems that could delay the development for several months.
A detailed planning application, recommended for approval by officers, was due to be heard by the planning committee of Carmarthenshire County Council last month but was withdrawn by the planning department at the eleventh hour following a dispute over a right of way. The application is still waiting to be discussed by the committee.
As part of the plan approved by planning officers Mr. Davies was required to enter a 106 agreement to upgrade a 100 yards right of way from the site to College Street and this he was prepared to do.
In the meantime, and despite the walkway being used as a right of way for more than 50 years, the owner of a nearby property is disputing this and has declined to enter a 106 agreement.
Now the local authority is planning to register the right of way with the Land Registry and this is likely to take some time, leaving Kevin Davies in limbo and a plan to develop a 14,000sqft supermarket up in the air.
The Town Council has objected to the plan on grounds that it is not appropriate in scale and character of the town and represents over-development of the site.
But planning officers say the new store, which will result in double the number of spaces at the adjacent council-run car park, will be of benefit because it will no longer be necessary for shoppers to travel to other centres such as Carmarthen and Cardigan.
Mr. Davies, who has built a new car showroom in New Road, and also owns the Emlyn Arms Hotel, says his plan will be a big boost to the community.
In relation to the Town Council objection he said “Some councillors have told me they are in favour of the proposal and that they have used the right of way for many years.
”I am trying to do what I honestly believe is the best for Newcastle Emlyn but I am disappointed and frustrated by events,” he said.