PLANS for new Lidl and Home Bargains stores are set to be submitted at a busy retail and shopping park in the area.

The proposal is for a new supermarket with an in-store bakery and separate Home Bargains with an associated garden centre, which could create 110 jobs.

Lidl has written to local residents for their views on the proposal for the stores on land off Bankwood Way at Birstall Retail Park.

The planning application is expected to be submitted in late January 2021 to Kirklees Council for the development.

Formerly home to office buildings, the site for the proposed stores currently stands empty and is boarded off.

It is bordered by the Showcase Cinema Deluxe, as well as a McDonald’s, Nando’s, Pizza Hut, Starbucks and Krispy Kreme to the north of the site, and to the west and south is a Frankie & Benny’s, Chiquito, KFC and Smyth’s Toys, as well as other office buildings.

To the south, there is also a plot of land allocated in Kirklees Council’s Local Plan for a permanent Gypsy and Travellers’ site, which could accommodate 12 permanent units and eight transit units.

The proposed site already has planning permission for four retail units, and Lidl said the proposals will not increase the amount of retail floorspace.

On the flyer delivered to local residents to the retail park, Lidl said: “The current proposals are for a new Lidl store and a separate Home Bargains store with accompanying outside garden centre, access, landscaping and parking.

The site is currently derelict, and the proposed development would deliver a high-quality retail scheme.

“The new stores will complement and add to the existing range of shops and services available at Birstall shopping park, whilst improving shopping choice and competition locally.

“They will also improve the visual appearance of the area by bringing the vacant site back into active use.

“The site benefits from excellent highways accessibility and public transport services operate on Gelderd Road less than 200m from the site.”

Lidl said the artist’s impression featured on the flyer of the supermarket could change following consultation with public ahead of the planning application being submitted.

A lidl spokesperson said: “We are extremely excited about the prospect of opening a new Lidl in Birstall and serving our fresh, quality and great value produce which shoppers across the country have come to love.

"Together, the new stores are set to create around 110 new positions which would be fantastic for the local community, and we hope that as many people as possible are able to join us for this 'virtual' public consultation. We look forward to sharing and discussing our plans with everyone.”

One local resident who received the flyer from Lidl said he has mixed feelings over the proposals.

The man, who asked not to be named, said: “The area’s been crying out for a supermarket, the nearest are a ten minute drive away.

“However, traffic around the retail park is horrendous most weekends and on evenings and I’m worried that a supermarket will making it even worse.

“There are long queues already, and the pollution this could bring would have such a bad impact on air quality.”

Nearby residents are encouraged to share their views, and can do so at the proposal's website here.