The Tonbridge proposals included plans to build a cinema, retail units and a replacement store and had enjoyed widespread public support in the town. The retailer claimed the plans were not viable.
Not surprisingly, project partner Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council has spoken out angrily about the decision, describing it as “misguided”.
The Canterbury project, unveiled in January in partnership with Land Securities, outlined plans for a larger store with a petrol station, leaving the existing site free for leisure facilities, such as a cinema and restaurant.
Luckily for Thanet, Sainsbury’s is about to get underway on a major development project on an 80,000ft2+ retail centre at Westwood Cross, which was of a similar design to the Canterbury proposals.
The retailer has claimed it is part of its strategy to focus on small convenience stores rather than major flagship schemes.