Nisa member Muhammad Shafiq was among those who opposed the plans

The Co-op has dropped plans to open an 8,000 sq ft store in London’s Belsize Park area that had been subject to protests from local businesses, including the owner of a nearby Nisa.

The Co-op had been seeking to gain an alcohol licence for the site from Camden Council and The Grocer understands there had been more than 130 objections submitted, including from Nisa member Muhammad Shafiq who owns the The Late Late Store in the area. The Co-op completed its £137m takeover of Nisa in May.

A Co-op spokesman confirmed it had abandoned plans to open the store before a licencing hearing was due.

“We have talked extensively to local people and while there is a range of views we do not now believe we’ll achieve the necessary consents required to successfully open and operate a store that will serve the needs of the whole community. Therefore we will not proceed,” he said.

Meanwhile, Nisa has designated its York University store as a ‘Model Store’ in ranging and merchandising the new Co-op own-label range, against which other Nisa members can benchmark.The store, which opened in February, currently stocks 700 Co-op lines.

“Working together with the team at York we have been able to showcase our vision and exhibit a living example of best practice,” said Nisa head of format and development Darren May.

“By looking at the York store and how Co-op own label is working for them, we hope that other Nisa partners will see how it can be integrated into their own businesses.”

York University store manager Adam Viney said: “It really is fantastic to be working with Nisa and winning together. Introducing this great brand to the students at the university and to local residents is proving really successful.

“The Co-op lines are all working really well for us. The margins are good, particularly on ambient - they are better than what we were getting before. And in chill, the range is driving customers into the store for the many excellent fresh lines. Co-op products are flying off the shelves and there are some that we just can’t keep up with.”