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Planning inspector backs council over Sainsbury’s planning refusal

A planning inspector has backed Islington Council’s refusal of planning permission for a new Sainsbury’s store in the former Highbury Vale Police Station in Blackstock Road.

Islington Council refused permission for the new store in February, because of highway safety concerns over proposed loading and unloading arrangements, and the new store’s potential impact on local shops.

Sainsbury’s Supermarket Ltd appealed against the decision, but today (17 October) the Planning Inspectorate dismissed the appeal.

In her appeal decision, Planning Inspector Claire Victory said: “I have found that the proposal would not harm the vitality and viability of the Finsbury Park Town Centre, but it would have a materially adverse effect on highway safety due to inadequate servicing arrangements. Consequently it would be contrary to the development plan as a whole.

“For the above reasons I therefore conclude that the appeal should be dismissed.”

Cllr Diarmaid Ward, Islington Council’s executive member for housing and development, said: “We’re very pleased the Planning Inspector has dismissed the appeal against our refusal of planning permission for Sainsbury’s in Blackstock Road.

“We had concerns about the highway safety of loading and unloading at the site, and also the impact of the proposals on the nearby Finsbury Park town centre.

“I’d like to thank local residents for all the views and feedback they have given about this application.”

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