Morrisons named as preferred bidder for Banff site

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SUPERMARKET firm Morrisons has been named by Aberdeenshire Council as the preferred bidder in a project that could see a new store built in Banff.

The development would see the creation of a supermarket, café, filling station, car wash and parking on land at Canal Park/Old Market Place.

The area of ground and buildings being bid for lie to the west of Deveron Bridge. A grass football pitch, pavilion and community centre are currently on the land, as well as three redundant tennis courts and a basketball court.

Much of the site is designated as common good land, meaning it will require the council to consult with the community and invite views for consideration before any decision is made. The council said that a consultation will begin this month (February) and run for eight weeks.

Once the consultation is complete, a report will be brought back to the council’s area committee for consideration before a final decision is made on whether to sell the land. The local authority would then need to secure a common good order to allow for the land to be sold.

It said that money generated from any sale of the land would be protected for the benefit of Banff and Macduff under the council’s common good fund.

Banff & Buchan area committee chair, councillor Doreen Mair, said, “This consultation follows years of discussion and negotiation about the future use of Canal Park and we’re now at the stage where we can formally ask the community for their views on the proposals.

“The project would be a significant development for the area and it is essential we have as broad a range of views as possible before a final decision is made.”

Committee vice-chair, councillor Michael Roy, added, “This is something that has been discussed for some time and could lead to significant investment in the area, and we want everybody to have the chance to participate and comment on the proposals.

“We know that the Banff, Macduff and wider communities will want to share their thoughts on the project and I would encourage everybody to take part.”