An eco-friendly Waitrose store is set to open in Wiltshire on Thursday amid vitriolic online opposition from locals because of its development on a greenfield site.
Opposition is based around a Facebook page called the Malmesbury Greenfield Campaign, which has received 172 likes. Commentators on the site have voiced concerns over visual pollution caused by the construction, but some have criticised the store more vociferously, describing a recent council visit as “Kim Jong-un surveys the latest nuclear test site.”
Property developer Simons Group, known for its eco credentials, was chosen by Waitrose to build the store. “We have been keen to open in Malmesbury for many years and believe the plans brought forward by Simons to deliver a store in a way that would respect its environment and preserve the town’s character,” said a Waitrose spokeswoman.
The store was constructed from FSC wood, uses LED lights and will provide nesting boxes for local birds. Residents remain unhappy at how the Wiltshire Council handled the planning application and have filed a complaint with the ombudsman.