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Planners' approval was needed before Queensbury supermarket extended Sunday hours
Supermarket Tesco has made an Olympic blunder over relaxed Sunday trading opening hours at one of its stores in the district.
The company has taken advantage of the temporary suspension of normal Sunday trading restrictions which are in place throughout the London Olympic and Paralympic Games. This allows large stores, which are usually restricted to opening for six hours on a Sunday, to open for longer from July 22 through to September 9.
In most cases planning permission is not needed, but in some circumstances, such as at the Queensbury store on Brighouse Road, planning conditions limit Sunday trading to between 10am and 4pm. As a result the company submitted a bid to Bradford Council to change the condition temporarily at the beginning of last month, but despite no decision having been made, the Queensbury story is now opening for 11 hours on Sundays from 9am to 8pm.
But due to the deadline for public consultation, the earliest the application could be approved is August 20, eight days after the Olympic closing ceremony.
In the application Tesco admits: “In most cases, planning permission is not needed to vary the opening hours on Sunday: conditions on Sunday trading are not normally imposed as they would duplicate the provisions in The Sunday Trading Act.
However, in some instances, stores are also subject to planning conditions limiting Sunday trading. In these circumstances, it is necessary to seek a temporary relaxation of the condition.”
In the case of the Queensbury store, which was granted planning permission in 2009, permission to vary the condition that currently restricts the trading hours would be required to allow a temporary change until after the Olympics and Paralymics.
A Bradford Council spokesman said: “We were surprised to hear Tesco’s had extended their Sunday opening hours before their application to temporarily open for longer on Sundays during the Olympics and Paralympics had been determined.”