Morrisons plans for town centre


Morrisons have won their store appeal

Commenting, Jo said:

“This will come as a deeply disappointing decision to many local residents, the Town Team and the Council’s planning officers who let Morrisons know their plans did not meet residents’ concerns.

“If Morrisons had taken residents’ comments on board they would have designed a store which was closer to the current town centre and complemented the existing character of the area, and avoided the whole appeal process.

“Now the permission is granted the Council must work with Morrisons, the community and other traders to make the best of this situation to create a vibrant future for Bishopbriggs town centre.”


No need for Morrisons to appeal if they listened to locals – Jo

Jo has written to the Scottish Government following the launch of Morrisons’ appeal against East Dunbartonshire Council.  The supermarket giant lodged an appeal after Council planning officers refused to grant them planning permission for a new food store and petrol station in Bishopbriggs.

It is expected that the Government will shortly appoint a Reporter, who will decide how to proceed with the appeal. Morrisons is disputing the Council’s claim that its plans contravene local planning rules.

Commenting, Jo said:

“I have written to the Scottish Government in support of the planning officers’ decision and to make clear that Morrisons’ plans did not meet residents concerns.

“Local people repeatedly let Morrisons know that the proposed store was not close enough to the current town centre, would force people to drive, and that it did not take the character of the area into account.

“This appeal is unwanted and unnecessary – if Morrisons had taken comments on board and acknowledged the existing town centre, they could come up with a new application which would be in line with local people’s wishes.”

17/05/13 - Commenting on Morrisons decision to appeal East Dunbartonshire Council’s planning refusal for a new store in Bishopbriggs Jo said:

“Many local people, on both sides of the issue, were taken aback when Morrisons application was turned down last month. "

“What I found in an e-consultation on the issue, and saw echoed in the local press, is that people want a diverse retail offer and community facilities in Bishopbriggs town centre but Councillors were clearly not convinced that Morrisons’ plans would be positive for the town centre.  Although they had taken account some local concerns in their plans, the increased distance between the store and the main shopping area of Bishopbriggs was a particular worry."

“It’s not particularly surprising that Morrisons have decided to appeal the decision, though it is a shame that they have decided to pursue this route rather than engage further on what changes to the plans would be needed to reassure the local community.” 

15/05/13 - Morrisons will appeal the Council’s planning refusal:

03/04/13 -The Council’s Planning Board has turned down Morrisons application to build a new store in Bishopbriggs. They voted by 15 votes to seven to reject the proposals.

21/02/13 – Commenting on East Dunbartonshire Council’s decision not to grant permission for Morrisons to build a petrol station Jo said:

“I welcome the Council Planning Board’s decision to organise a site visit before deciding whether the proposed new Morrisons store for Bishopbriggs should go ahead.

“This decision is one that could affect the character of our town centre for years to come and Councillors need to consider it very carefully.

“I think the Council made the right call to refuse Morrisons’ plans for a petrol station, as a recent consultation I did to find out local residents’ views had 57 per cent of respondents against this proposal fearing increased traffic and pollution.  However I know it may disappoint a number of local residents as there was some support for this locally inthe hopes it would drive down fuel costs.”

21/02/13 – Morrisons’ petrol station plans have been refused by the Council. The Council will discuss the new store plans on 2 April 2013 following a site visit

19/02/13 – The application will be considered at the full Planning Board meeting on 19 February. The recommendations for the Morrisons site are:

  • To refuse the petrol station and long stay car park.
  • To grant the store.

It is possible that a site visit at South Crosshill Road will be granted before the application is considered.  .

21/01/13 – Blog post on the latest changes proposed by Morrisons

17/10/12 – Cleddens Residents group hold meeting with planner Stewart McNally in advance of 26 October deadline to feed back to the Council.

19/09/12 – Bishopbriggs Town Team Meeting held to discuss the recently submitted plans.

08/08/12 – Jo met with Morrisons just weeks before they submit their final plan to the Council. Read Jo’s comments here.

30/05/12 – Morrisons is holding a public exhibition, the chance for the public to see the plans for Bishopbriggs Town Centre which includes a civic hub and focal point.

26/01/12 – Jo was one of the many community members who visited the Town Team meeting where local residents came along to ‘vote’ for their favourite ideas or solutions.

20/01/12 – Jo Swinson met with Richard Bakes from Morrison to voice community concerns over their plans. Read Jo’s comment here.

14/01/12 – Jo attended the PlaceCheck where over 100 people turned out to voice their views and concerns. Read Jo’s comments here.

23/12/11 – Jo has criticised Morrisons for producing inappropriate plans for Bishopbriggs town centre, and for their inadequate community engagement so far. Read Jo’s comments here.

12/09/11 – Jo has spoken to Morrisons to get an update on the latest Bishopbriggs Town Centre redevelopment news – see a summary of the news and Jo’s comments here.

25/03/11 – Following Jo’s meeting with Guy Mason from Morrisons, it was suggested that she should meet Morrisons’ Scottish contact, Andrew Wood. Jo asked for a guarantee that the plans would not move forward until extensive consultation with the community had been carried out. You can read her comments here.

The results are in: locals divided on Morrisons’ plans

Jo conducted three surveys as part of her latest e-consultation seeking local residents’ views on the various development projects planned in East Dunbartonshire.

One of the surveys focused on the redevelopment of Bishopbriggs town centre, in particular, the applications recently submitted by Morrisons for a new store and a petrol station.

Results show there is some appetite for change with 35 per cent of respondents thinking the current state of the town centre was poor, with too much traffic, a lack of retailers and a lack of character. 40 per cent of respondents felt the current town centre was acceptable.

When it came to plans for a new Morrisons supermarket respondents were divided. Of those who expressed an opinion 55 per cent were against the plan and 45 per cent for it. Many residents are worried about the size of the store and its potential impact to change the character of the town, increase traffic, and impact businesses already in the town centre.

Commenting, Jo Swinson said:

“It’s clear that there’s a real desire for a redeveloped town centre that acts as a community hub with better shopping available for local residents. However many are concerned that the plans Morrisons have on the table are not going to contribute to bringing this about.

“People are worried that the new store is primarily aimed at car users, many of whom will not come to the town centre to use the other shops and facilities. And with the store planned to be built considerably further from the town centre than the current one, there is a real danger it will impact on the vitality of the existing centre.

“Overall, there is clear support for a more diverse retail offer and community facilities in the town centre. It is vital that the Council ensure that any development is done well with the needs of Bishopbriggs, rather than a supermarket chain, at the forefront.

All documents relating to Morrisons planning applications will be available on East Dunbartonshire Council’s Planning and Building Standards website at

“I have passed the results on in my comments to the Council.”

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