Changes to major plans for Salt Box field after £5m grant request refused

Saltbox revised plans BE/135/18/PL
Saltbox revised plans BE/135/18/PL

Major plans for business units, a gym, hotel and a restaurant on land at Salt Box field have had to be changed after hoped-for funding did not materialise.

The employment-led scheme in Shripney Road is one of several in the Enterprise Bognor Regis Scheme to create jobs.

Plans approved in 2017 for the site had included a pub or restaurant, a hotel and a gym in the south-east corner but these are now to be replaced by a car showroom and the business units will now include an Aldi store.

A hybrid application (BE/135/18/PL) to Arun District Council is now asking for permission for the discount retail store alongside drive-thru units for Starbucks and another retailer, car servicing and MOT workshops.

Planning documents show the car showroom would be for the Richmond Motor Group offering models such as MG and Hyundai.

Aldi would be the third largest unit on site at around 19,000 sq ft, after a larger warehouse and a distribution unit for Warburtons.

A planning statement on the application explained: “The viability of the 2017 planning permission was reliant on grant funding in conjunction with the pre-let of the unit in the north western corner to Warburtons and a modest amount of commercial development including a hotel, the drive thru restaurants and a pub/restaurant plus gym at the south of the site.

“However, an application via a Local Growth Fund application to Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership seeking a £5million contribution to infrastructure costs was not successful and the applicant has therefore had to consider an alternative mix of uses at the site so that the delivery of the site infrastructure and employment space can be delivered viably.”

If permission is granted, the developer intends to deliver the first phase of the project, building the Warburton’s unit, by September, according to the application’s project plan.