Budleigh Salterton’s Tesco Express is a step closer to opening after a ‘mechanical plant’ housing refrigeration and air conditioning kit was given the go-ahead.
The supermarket giant asked for permission to site the unit in a 26sq m timber-fenced yard area behind its in-progress outlet at 10 Fore Street.
East Devon District Council (EDDC) officers gave the plans the green light – saying they were satisfied sound-proofing measures would prevent any noise nuisance.
Approval was given despite concern raised by the Fore Street-based Norman Family Charitable Trust.
Tesco is currently converting the former SM Prior and Son furnishers shop.
The reconstruction of a single-storey rear addition to the premises – to create extended retail floor space in place of two flats – is in progress.
Proposals for a cashpoint to the front of the supermarket were approved earlier this month.
The retail heavyweight asked for planning permission for a mechanical plant and associated equipment comprising two air conditioning condenser units, a refrigeration pack and an acoustic enclosure.
Plans stated the refrigeration plant had been selected ‘to ensure the lowest possible noise levels’ and the air conditioning units will be operated in ‘quiet mode’.
Granting the application planning permission under delegated powers, an EDDC officer said: “It is thought that the proposal would be acceptable and would not result in any harm to the character or appearance of the conservation area…or the living conditions of neighbouring or nearby occupiers through noise nuisance.
“No objections are raised to the proposal by either the town council or the ward members subject to the appropriate sound attenuation measures being implemented in line with the submitted details. These are supported by the council’s environmental health officers.”
William Tee, chairman of the Norman Family Charitable Trust, said it held concerns relating to the operation of its offices at 14 Fore Street, which comprise three independent companies.
The trust was also worried about a residential house to the rear; Forelands at 12 Fore Street.
Mr Tee said in a letter to EDDC: “The trust are very concerned about the noise attenuation and sound-proofing around the enclosure to ensure that the noise from this does not affect the amenity and use of the house; both within the building and the use of the garden to the south, but also the courtyard garden immediately adjacent to the plant room enclosure.
“With bedrooms at first storey level near to the enclosure, where noise in the late evening, night and early morning could cause distress through disturbance and the lack of sleep, the running times and noise levels of the plant and equipment are of concern both during the day, as outlined above, and particularly at night. We therefore request that strict criteria and limitations are written into the planning consent.”