Asda’s Application For Signs

Asda have applied for planning permission for a total of 38 signs for their new store off Rawreth Lane at the moment. Some are pretty small, some are large or illuminated.

As there’s a lot of interest in Asda at the moment, here’s the officers report, recommending approval. The application is on this weeks ‘yellow list’, which means that it will be auutomatically passed unless at least one councillor ‘calls it in’ by 1 pm on Tuesday:

Application No : 07/00701/ADV
Zoning: Mixed Use Development

Location : Former Park School Rawreth Lane Rayleigh
Proposal :
Various Signage to ASDA Store and Car Parking Area Comprising: 1 Set of 2450mm High Internally Illuminated Letters, 1 Set of 2450mm High Applied Vinyl Letters Externally Illuminated, 3 off 5000mm x 2650mm Feature Slat Signs, 3 off 2000mm x 1390mm Opening Hours Signs and Various Car Park Signs.

Rayleigh Town Council – objection on the basis that Planning Permission has not been granted for 24 Hour operation and the size and intensity is not conducive to the street scene and is detrimental to the amenities of local residents.

This application is to the site of the former Park School on the southern side of Rawreth Lane opposite the junction with Parkhurst Drive. Specifically, the application relates to signage proposed for the Asda neighbourhood retail store currently under construction on part of the site. The remaining site has now been developed to provide a Leisure Centre, Primary School and residential development immediately to the west of the site including 40 No key worker flats.
Planning Permission was granted on Appeal under application reference 05/1049/FUL for the provision of the retail store and a mixed use building including further retail and non-retail units. A more recent application under reference 07/00588/FUL approved revisions to the details of retail store. In allowing the previous appeal the Inspector did not restrict the customer opening hours but did restrict the delivery of goods to be sold to between the hours of 07:00-23:00 hrs on any day.
The current application proposes two illuminated signs to the building together with various directional and minor signage throughout the site.
As originally submitted the proposal included an internally illuminated ASDA sign made up of individually illuminated letters having a height of 2.45m and overall width of the illuminated word of 8.368m sited on the forward roof edge facing northwards onto the car park and Rawreth Lane. The applicants have more recently revised this sign on officers advice, removing it from the roof to a position affixed to the front walling to the building above the entrance canopy. As revised , the size of letters and internal illuminated remains unchanged.
To the side of the building fronting onto Priory Chase is also proposed an externally illuminated ASDA sign made up of individual letters 3.0m in height and to an overall width of the illuminated word of 10.28m. On officers advice the applicants have reduced the size of the letters and resultant word to a smaller height of 2.45m and overall width of the illuminated word of 8.336m.
Following concerns raised by residents and in discussion with officers, the applicants would accept a condition requiring the illuminated adverts to be switched off outside customer opening hours. Officers consider such a condition to be reasonable to any consent that might be granted.
The description of the application also includes two internally illuminated disc signs “24 Hours” but these are an optional sign that the applicants have since asked to be deleted from the application as the store is not to open to customers 24 hours.

The remaining signage is non-illuminated and would generally comprise listings, information, directional and dedicated parking signage typical to retail store environments and about the site and car parking areas. The signage would be in the ASDA corporate Green and white colouring with disabled parking discs in the recognised blue and white finish. Where the signage is to be mounted on posts, these would be made of steel and to a height of 2m. The various disc signage would have an overall diameter of 0.74m mounted on top of the steel posts.

The proposal also includes 3 No. feature goal post signs to an overall height of 5m and width of 3.088m which would be located in front of the mixed use building at the junction of Rawreth Lane, at the customer car park entrance and at the service yard entrance facing onto the roundabout in Priory Chase. The proposal also includes 3 No. smaller Goal post location signs to the pedestrian crossing within the car park area adjoining the mixed use building and the customer car park and pedestrian entrances off Priory Chase.

The design and appearance of the signage would fit in with the retail store and neighbourhood centre environment resulting from the development under construction and would not conflict with Local Plan policy SAT 9.

The extent of signage to which this application relates would result in 38 No. individual signs about the neighbourhood centre. Given their essentially directional and informative nature typical to the retail environment, it is not considered that the extent of signage proposed is excessive. The proposal would not therefore conflict with Local Plan policy SAT 11.

Essex County Council Highways and Transportation – no objection subject to the maximum luminance of up to 10 square metres not exceeding 800cdm2 and for over 10 square metres not exceeding 600cdm2.

Four letters have been received in response to the public consultation and which in the main make the following comments and objections:

o Bearing in mind this is mainly a residential area and the store is overlooked totally by housing , illuminated signage would be completely inappropriate.
o Poor design
o Object to the size and quantity of signage
o The signs would be overpowering and would visually dominate the neighbourhood
o Could adversely affect the quiet enjoyment of nearby domestic properties
o Illuminated signs do not form part of a residential area
o Have no objection as long as the signage is not illuminated.

Page 18 of 18
1 SAC1 Advert Time Limit (5 Years)
2 SAC3 Advert – Standard Condition
3 The maximum luminance of the advertisement(s) hereby permitted to be displayed, shall not exceed 800 cd/m.sq. for the lit zone up to ten square metres and 600 cd/m.sq. for the lit zone over ten square metres in accordance with the APLE Technical Report Number 5 (Third Edition).
4 The illuminated advertisements hereby permitted shall be switched off and non-illuminated outside the periods of customer trading at the store.
Relevant Development Plan Policies and Proposals:
SAT9, SAT11, of the Rochford District Council Adopted Replacement Local Plan

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  • Chris, Is there anything anyone can do to stop this Jugganaut called Asda bulldozing all before them. The Council seem powerless to consider the residents over the all powerful corporate here. I do wonder some times if there is enough consideration given to these people who will have to put up with all that they will have to endure. What percentage for instance, of the residents would have bought a house in this development if they had known what was about to happen. I now believe this situation is one that local council cannot handle and maybe the national authorities need to be involved.

  • The thing is Mike, that the District Council voted – as Ron and I asked – to refuse the main Asda application.

    It’s the national authorities – in the form of the government inspector – who allowed it.

  • Hi Chris, I understand the reason that you have given, however it is not in the interest of the residents only the corporate! I think this has gone far enough, something has to be said, done, or listened to. The Corporates are bulldozing all before them and someone has to stand up for the residents. The Tory council must know they are in a no win situation. They will be driven from office if they do not stand up for the residents rights (or do they have any rights anymore?). This must be happening all over the country and it is just not right. We do need to put this situation to any of the media that will give time to it, be it Asda, Tesco or Sainsbury or the council we need to make this a national problem!

  • Personally, I can not wait for the new Asda store to open – for the sole reason it can be factored into the valuation of my property – if the value has dropped considerably, which I fear it has, I will be looking into taking legal recourse against either Asda or George Wimpey who had missold these houses by stating that the Asda would be no larger than a Tesco Express.

    Can someone though explain to me why the store needs to having signage on the side facing Priory Chase – it’s not as though this would be seen from Rawreth Lane, and indeed traffic to the store will not travel up Priory Chase far enough to see it – which makes me wonder are Asda thinking of the residents that live opposite the store and want to permanently advertise to the residents that the store is there?

    If Asda does go 24 hour (which we know it will shortly after it opens) I urge the local residents to exercise your right to demonstrate and free speech – perhaps then and only then will Asda get the message that they are not wanted here.

  • If I didn’t know what the monster being built opposite my house was, I do now – coming home from wrk tonight, was met with the monsterous letters on the side of the Asda building – pretty much the same size as the illuminated sign, these stick on letters will definately be reminding the people living opposite (no one else will see them) what it is we have to live opposite!

    Can someone PLEASE tell me what the point of putting a sign up where only 6 houses can see it?

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