TOWN centre land which has been home to the former Skurrays car dealership must be protected from being used to build another retirement home complex in Marlborough, says the town’s mayor.

Cllr Lisa Farrell believes the site on George Lane, which is now up for sale, should instead be used for a household and homeware store, like those run by Wilko, to help people who cannot travel to larger towns get everyday items, which is something she believes the town lacks.

Other residents have said they would rather see the former Now Vauxhall garage, which closed in April, used for a budget food shop, a multi-storey car park and even a crazy golf course.

Locals have written to both Aldi and Lidl’s head offices urging the supermarket chains to come to Marlborough.

Following its closure customers were left facing a 30 mile round trip to the nearest store in Swindon, now run by Eden Motor Group.

The showroom and car park, which has 43 spaces, is up for sale with a guide price of £635,000.

Cllr Farrell said: “We need places where people can shop for everyday things. What we don’t need is more retirement homes or housing. It should be something selling affordable goods so that people don’t have to travel.

“I still have to go to Swindon to get clothes and something we are very short of is a shop selling household goods so I think a Wilko or Primark would be fantastic.

“As a councillor I will have to go with what the majority of the people in the town want.”

Over 70 people have voiced their opinions on social media about the future of the site, with views ranging from those who oppose more shops near the town centre, to a call for a soft play area for young children and a suggestion the doctors surgery could expanded from its home across the road. The Gazette asked the surgery about the idea, but had not received a response by the time the paper went to press.

Cllr Stewart Dobson said: “I would hate to see it is empty for a long time. It is important that something goes in there that provides employment and services for the town.

“It is a central location and would be ideal for some kind of service for the town. It could also continue as a garage. as we only have one left now and two petrol stations.”

“The doctors surgery does need to expand but I don’t know if this is best suited for it.”

Agents Alder King said the showroom would need planning permission for a conversion. Partner James Gregory said: “This is a rare opportunity to purchase a prominent well-ordered property in this bustling market town. Whilst the property was originally developed as a car showroom, it would be suitable for a number of other uses.”

The building has been on the market since June 21.