Plans to demolish a derelict town centre supermarket and build new housing have been slammed over parking fears.

The former Co-op store on Mill Street in Calne has been empty since April 2020 and in that time has been a magnet for incidents of anti-social behaviour.

In July 2022 developers Hawkfield Homes Ltd applied for planning permission to tear down the prominent disused building and replace it with 26 new dwellings and commercial space fronting onto Mill Street.

But this proposal has met opposition from both residents and the town council after revised plans were submitted in August.

At a town council planning committee meeting on October 4, Calne town councillors voted unanimously to object to the scheme.

The councillors were concerned that the amount of parking required for the development could not be accommodated and would become a “burden on nearby residential areas.”

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: The former Co-op store in CalneThe former Co-op store in Calne (Image: Newsquest)This echoed previous objections to the scheme.

One local said: “I must raise again my concern about inadequate parking on the site. There is nowhere other than nearby residential streets which do not have parking restrictions.

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“But those who are familiar with the adjacent streets know how little free space there is.”

Three members of the public also spoke at the meeting and raised similar concerns.

As well as highlighting parking issues, councillors claimed the River Marden should be used as an “attractive feature” of any regeneration project and labelled the plans an unimaginative use of the site.

The proposal has sparked opposition from residents who fear the loss of a prominent town centre retail space.

One person added: “The past does not need to dictate the future and you now have an opportunity to create a social space with cafes, shops and community facilities.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: The former Co-op store in CalneThe former Co-op store in Calne (Image: Newsquest)“Calne has seen the surrounding countryside filled with housing, this housing needs facilities and those should be in the town centre and should complement the very beautiful and historic areas.

“Make Calne a destination rather than a place to avoid.”

Hawkfield Homes Ltd did not respond to a request for comment.

In their design and access statement, the developers claimed the site provided an “exciting opportunity” to create new contemporary buildings informed by local context and history.

The consultation deadline for the proposal passed on October 10.

No new decision deadline has been set by Wiltshire Council after the original date of May 31 was missed due to the submission of revised documents.