A SUPERMARKET will be developed in the town centre that will create 450 jobs as planning approval was granted last week.

Red Property Services will develop the superstore on a site opposite Morrisons supermarket off Westway.

It is not yet know who will occupy it but Red say it will create up to 450 jobs and will be built on the site at the corner of John Street, Thomas Street, Burleigh Street and Joseph Street.

A large part of the site is used for council and privately-run pay and display parking, and buildings within the site include the Addaction drug rehabilitation centre on John Street, and the vacant Gala Bingo building.

Council planning officer Joe Jenkinson described the building as being 'higher than the Alhambra,’ bigger than both neighbouring Morrisons and Asda on Old Mill Lane, but smaller than the Tesco at Stairfoot.

Plans show it will be partially-built into the hillside with a projecting glass atrium supported by stilts, and will have a landscaped piazza underneath leading to a pedestrian crossing over Westway.

Escalators will take shoppers up to the level of the superstore, and inside there will be a café. Plans also show it will have a petrol filling station, service yard and a 542-space car park.

Mr Jenkinson said: "It will be a prominent structure but there are significant visual enhancements. It will be built into the hillside, somewhat reducing the impact. It will transform the character of the site, which is largely unused and derelict and will create a sizeable number of new jobs.

“An enormous amount can be done to make sure the benefits are felt locally.”

14 letters of objection were received by the council, including one from Morrisons.

It objected on grounds it would have a ‘definite impact’ on its business and the vitality of the town centre.