Plans to transform former garage site unveiled next week

Willis of Alnwick
Willis of Alnwick

Plans to transform a derelict former fuel station and garage site into a retail development in a north Northumberland town are going on show next week.

Northumberland Estates is unveiling the proposal for land on South Road, Alnwick, previously home to Willis of Alnwick, which closed in 2009.

The company says that the plot has been brought forward for retail development and has secured an anchor tenant – although has not yet disclosed who this is.

Colin Barnes, director of planning and development at the Estates, said: “We consider that the currently-derelict site is within a commercial area of South Road and is in a key location in ensuring that Alnwick remains economically vibrant and an attractive place to both residents and visitors in the future.

“As the area’s main service centre, it is important that the town does not stand still and continues to attract new investment and services.

“We feel the proposed redevelopment will complement the existing retail offer in the town and, importantly, give the community the choice they deserve.”

The Estates purchased the site from Tesco in 2012 and demolition work was carried out shortly after.

The area has been labelled an eyesore and the Estates has been exploring the options available to bring the site back into viable and beneficial use.

Last month the Gazette revealed that the Estates were in talks with international supermarket chain, Aldi, as well as other major retailers.

This week, we made repeated attempts to Aldi to see if the firm was moving onto the site, but no one replied at the time of going to press.

The public exhibition of the development proposal is at Alnwick Cricket Club, Weavers Way, on Wednesday, from 4pm to 7pm.