It looks like an end to the impasse over a new Calderdale supermarket is in sight.
Lidl had been in breach of two key planning conditions of its permission to develop a new bigger store on Halifax Road, Todmorden, just 100 yards away from its existing outlet, with concerns over how floodwater would disperse from the site.
Finally, a flood storage basin, which will be built next to the new store’s car park, should provide somewhere for water to go when extreme weather strikes.
The new store has been built for almost a year but because the build had not satisfied the two important conditions, it has not been allowed to open.
Neighbouring homes and businesses would be at an increased risk from flooding if it was not resolved satisfactorily, Calderdale was advised by the Environment Agency, and accordingly last December the council issued Lidl with a planning contravention notice.
Lidl denied any breach but the council has stuck to its guns.
Residents first raised concerns about the new build last summer but have been at pains to state it is not the development itself they were opposed to but the build, fearing increased risk to their properties, which have flooded in the past.
Throughout this year the council and Lidl, with the Environment Agency, have been searching for a solution and it may now open at the end of the summer.
Calderdale Council’s Cabinet member for Planning, Housing and Environment, Councillor Daniel Sutherland (Lab, Illingworth and Mixenden), said the three organisations had been working closely to ensure the potential for properties to flood was properly managed.
“It has now been agreed that a flood water storage basin will be constructed on land next to the Lidl car park.
“Work on the basin will start soon and is expected to be complete in late summer, with the store opening shortly afterwards.
“The council and Lidl are pleased that this issue is being resolved,” he said.
A spokesperson for Lidl thanked the local community for continued patience and support.
She said: “Whilst we have always operated in compliance with the recommendations set out in both our Flood Risk Assessment and planning conditions, our teams have been working closely with the Environment Agency and Calderdale Council over the last few months, to provide them with the additional reassurances that they sought.
“We are pleased to confirm that an agreement is now in place and we look forward to confirming an opening date for the store in due course.
“We would encourage anyone interested in working with us, to visit our careers site for more information on recruitment opportunities.”