A DERELICT mill is to be knocked down to make way for a discount food store and a new pub.
Plans to build a Lidl and a Marston’s pub on the site of Glen Mill, in North Valley Road, Colne, were approved by councillors despite local objections.
Residents in Hannover Street were concerned about the possibility of increased traffic along their road, while there were also concerns about adding to the congestion on North Valley Road and about damaging the vitality of Colne town centre.
But the plans were approved by councillors, who said they were the best option for the site.
Coun Joe Cooney said: “Is it ideal? No. Are we going to get anything better? No.
“We cannot leave it as an eyesore. We have to get the best deal we can for the entire town.”
As part of the plans, the developers will fund a scheme to synchronise the traffic lights along the notoriously congested North Valley Road.
Coun Cooney said: “The changes to the traffic lights along North Valley Road will help keep the traffic flowing.
“If we want to stop congestion then we need to build a bypass.”
Graham Wharton, chairman of the Colne Town Centre Forum, said: “Developments like this can be damaging by taking customers away from the town centre.
“You get customers that love coming to Colne but it takes too long to get into the town.”
However, councillors said the town centre remained successful, despite out-of-town supermarkets.
Coun Tony Greaves said: “Colne town centre is not decimated. The town centre is a success story. We have to pinch ourselves at how much of a success story it is.”
An exit from the site will be on to Hannover Street, but one of the conditions of the development will mean the entrance to the site from the street will be blocked off, and vehicles will only be able to turn left on to Hannover Street, towards North Valley Road.