Lidl returns with another bid to demolish Mottingham’s Porcupine pub

By Lachlan Leeming, Local Democracy Reporter

A decision on plans to demolish Mottingham’s Porcupine Pub to make way for a new Lidl could finally be made this week.

The supermarket giant’s plans for the disused public house will return to Bromley council’s development control committee on Thursday, in what will be the group’s first meeting to be held online.

It is the latest tilt by Lidl to knock down the old boozer, and comes after the planning board deferred a decision when last asked in March – the latest in a long history of delays and refusals related to the plans.

Councillors at that meeting delayed a decision after Bromley and Chislehurst MP Sir Bob Neill expressed doubts over whether Lidl seriously attempted to sell the public house, as it claimed.

Sir Bob conceded at the time it was “rare” to involve himself on specific planning matters.

However, the level of opposition from local residents – 248 of 307 letters received by the council objected to the proposal – necessitated it, he said.

Councillors also asked for more information from Lidl on how it would achieve carbon reduction limits set out in London’s draft plan, as well as additional details on how traffic would be impacted at the site.

Ward councillors David Cartwright and Will Rowlands were among those who also voiced their opposition to the plans.

Council officers had previously supported the proposal, with Thursday’s item again receiving their blessing.

The updated information supplied by Lidl and considered by officers states that while the draft London Plan states new major development should be net zero-carbon, no timetable on that advice being adopted has been provided.

Without the updated amendments, council officers said Lidl’s initial plans to reduce carbon output at the site remained acceptable and would comply with current policy.

Council officers were also comfortable with traffic changes, which would occur as a result of the development.

It came after councillors voiced concerns that lorries unloading at the supermarket would block Mottingham Road and present a risk to children in the car park.

A legal agreement between the council and Lidl would see the latter contribute £5,000 towards reviewing and amending traffic waiting zones at the site.

The meeting will also see a proposal discussed to partially demolish and convert the use of the old town hall site, which would see 53 apartments in a five-storey block built on the South Street car park under current proposals.

A plan to demolish offices at Wells House, from 15-17 Elmfield Road, to be replaced by a new part-seven and part-eight-storey office block, will also be decided.

The meeting will be live-streamed here.

Pictured top: An artist’s impression of what the Lidl could look like

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