THE LONG-RUNNING saga of a new budget supermarket opening in Kendal looks set to be resolved imminently.

Lidl Great Britain Ltd submitted an application for a premises license to South Lakeland District Council on June 14 for the sale of alcohol in the current Homebase store on Beezon Road.

The consultation period lasts for 28 days, and if approved, the license will be valid from July 13. 

This latest development comes around 20 months after a planning application was submitted by Lidl to SLDC for "Refurbishment and external alterations to the existing store and other associated works to provide a discount food store" - permission was granted in December 2020, but Homebase announced that its Beezon Road store would indeed be staying open.

The matter remained seemingly dormant until May this year, when Homebase announced that it would be closing its Kendal store, and Lidl submitted planning applications for the site in relation to biodiversity, external lighting, and refuse and recycling, as well as the current alcohol retail license application.

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Scores of Kendal residents took to social media to express their opinions after the license application was submitted, many saying that the town is already over-served by supermarkets.

One said: "Are Sainsbury, Asda, Morrisons, Aldi, Iceland, Booths, Marks and Spencers not enough competition in such a small town?

"Then there is a Tesco Extra in town, and all the small local Kendal convenience stores on estates, when there is only one other large DIY store in Kendal."

Another said: "I will really miss Homebase, so sorry for the staff, and so sorry for customers who will lose out on having a DIY store on this side of Kendal. 

In Cumbria: PLANS: The proposed floor plans for the Kendal LidlPLANS: The proposed floor plans for the Kendal Lidl

"I am a pedestrian and I used Homebase for all my DIY needs, you will be missed - Kendal does not need another supermarket!"

Others welcomed the potential new retail offering, with one resident saying:
"Lidl will bring more jobs to Kendal, it's cheaper than Asda with good produce too.

"That can only be a good thing for everyone, I look forward to shopping in Lidl."

Another positive shopper said: "My daughter was in the area near to Lidl at Lancaster and came home with two full bags of lovely food and shopping for £8.

"l have never seen her so excited about shopping before, most beautiful jam."

Kendal Business Improvement District (BID) manager Peter Brendling said:

"Whilst there might be positives or negatives to Lidl taking over the Homebase site, it is certainly better to have a business there providing employment rather than the building standing empty."

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