Green light for Pure Gym and B&M Home Store with Garden Centre at Kingsway

Gloucester city councillors have given the green light to proposals for a new 47,000 sq ft retail and leisure scheme to be occupied by a B&M Home Store with Garden Centre and Pure Gym at Kingsway.

Developer Robert Hitchins Ltd is bringing the two national brands to the three-acre brownfield site in Newhaven Road, Gloucester. There will also be 205 parking spaces.

Michael Plimmer, Senior Development Manager for Robert Hitchins Ltd, said: “We’re delighted to have won the backing of councillors. These proposals will not only regenerate a derelict site which has been empty for more than a decade, it will also bring more retail and leisure facilities to people in Kingsway and more choice.”

Mark Buxton, Planning consultant from RPS, acting on behalf of Robert Hitchins Ltd, told the council’s planning committee that 87% of people who attended the public consultation in July 2018 were in favour of the scheme.

“The development will bring 60 local jobs and economic investment to Kingsway from companies who are offering long-term commitment to the area,” he said.

Ward councillor for Kingsway Cllr Richard Cook addressed the committee in favour of the proposals. “This will replace an ugly brownfield site with a much-wanted retail facility,” he said.

Councillors voted against a recommendation by council officers to refuse the planning application. The officer’s report said there were no issues about retail impact, parking, traffic or harm to the environment however it would be preferable, if the development were sited at the Peel Centre in Gloucester or at the Quedgeley District Centre.

Pure Gym is backed by cycling supremo Sir Chris Hoy and has almost 1 million members at 192 premises nationwide.

B&M, formed in 1978, is now one of the leading variety retailers in the UK. It employs more than 28,000 staff in 560 stores all over the UK.

Kingsway has emerged on the site of the former 340-acre RAF Quedgeley. The original masterplan included 3,300 homes, a 40-acre employment site, community and leisure facilities, retail, sports area and primary school.