This is the first in a series of posts examining the Rocks Green supermarket application and asking what difference it will make to Ludlow and the people who live here. This is a major development. The store will be half as big again as Tesco and will include a petrol station. The supermarket is the most controversial aspect of the proposal. On my soundings, there are as many residents in favour of a new store as there are against. As a member of the South Planning Committee, I haven’t yet taken a view on this application but please let me know your views.

The application for outline planning permission for a major supermarket and petrol station at Rocks Green, Ludlow has been published on Shropshire Council’s website (14/05573/OUT).


The proposed store will be half as big again as Ludlow Tesco. It will have an estimated turnover of £26 million. Three-quarters of the sales area will be devoted to food and everyday goods. The other quarter will stock comparison goods, merchandise such as clothing, electrical items and music. The developers say:

A store of this size will offer a full range of product lines, and will allow shoppers to undertake their full weekly bulk shopping.

There will be 225 car parking spaces outside the store. A petrol station the other side of Duncow Road will have twelve filling points.


The planning application proposes the redevelopment of the site to provide a 3,525 sq metres gross internal area foodstore along with a petrol filling station, car parking and associated access, works and landscaping. (Gross internal area is known as GIA – see the jargon buster for this and other terms.)

The supermarket will be single storey, except at the back towards Rocks Green where there will be an extra story for storage. It will have a sales area (NIA) of 2,322 sq metres or 25,000 sq ft; Ludlow Tesco is 1,481 sq metres. The development will include 225 car parking spaces and 12 bike racks.

75% of the sales area will be dedicated to convenience goods and 25% to comparison goods.

The petrol filling station (PFS) will provide six petrol pumps, with 12 filling points and a kiosk of 120 sq metres (GIA) with a forecourt, canopy and two car parking spaces.

Frequently Asked Questions

The developers haven’t produced a FAQ, but if they had it might run like this (the words in italics are from the planning application):

Which retail chain will run the store if it is built?

Interest has been expressed in the site by a number of the main supermarket operators; however, at this stage an operator is not named in this application. We have no doubt that an operator will be signed if consent is granted.

How will the development affect the town centre?

There is no evidence that the proposed foodstore is likely to result in significant adverse impacts on Ludlow town centre. There is no planned investment in Ludlow town centre at present which could be jeopardised or impacted upon by the proposals.

How many jobs will the new store create?

The 210 in-store jobs will create the equivalent of 140 full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs at the new foodstore.

Okay, tell me what this store will do for Ludlow

The development will:
Develop a site which constitutes previously developed land, all of which is suitable for development, in a sustainable location that offers the only site in Ludlow where a foodstore can be accommodated;
Provide a suitably sized foodstore to meet weekly shopping requirements;
Have a low level of impact and will not result in significant adverse harm on the vitality and viability of Ludlow town centre particularly given the town centre’s level of health and popularity;
Maintain and improve an efficient, competitive and innovative retail sector;
Strengthen the economic base of Ludlow and create approximately 210 jobs and add approximately £3m to Ludlow’s economy annually;
Reduce car mileage and claw back expenditure currently leaking from Ludlow’s catchment to stores elsewhere; and
Provide retail facilities that will be accessible by a variety of means of transport.

More information and guidance from me

Commenting on planning applications
Ludlow Rocks Green supermarket bid – jargon buster
Ludlow Rocks Green supermarket bid – the planning context

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