Both Sedgemoor District Council and Somerset County Council fully understand that the proposed sale of the Northgate site is potentially an emotive and controversial decision. This decision to sell the site to Tesco was a balanced one; set in the context of current and future predictions of public funding, the need to boost market town economies, which many traders and shoppers say is paramount, and the desire to promote a major change to Bridgwater town centre.
Northgate is a 12.4 acre (5 hectares) site, bounded by the Docks to the north, the old Thompsons building to the west, Northgate car park to east and the Police station and the Magistrates Court to the south. It roughly comprises of the Brewery Field, Somerset County Council's office buildings, Mount Street car park and the site of the former Splash. The Police Station, Magistrate's Court and Chalice Mews are not included in the site.
The site is jointly owned by Sedgemoor District Council and Somerset County Council and any monies from the sale of the site will be split proportionately.
Sedgemoor District Council and Somerset County Council have both made the decision to sell their Northgate land holdings to Tesco. Further consideration of whether the Tesco proposals are right for the site and the impact on the town and its surrounding villages will be decided via the planning process. As with any major planning application, there will be full consultation with all interested parties, including the general public.
Disposal of open space
The Tesco bid will retain a significant area of open space which it is proposed will be managed for the benefit of the public. The development of the Northgate site requires the disposal of an area of open space, Brewery Field, Brewery Field occupies an area of approximately 1.409 hectares / 3.48 acres. The Tesco bid included proposals to enhance Brewery Field and would result in the remaining land being open to the public. Part of the area of current open space would be lost to public use: this will be offset, by the open space expanding into an area which is currently used for car parking and hard landscaped public space which would be increased.
The plan for the site is below, as well as a copy of the Notice for the disposal of open space.