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Trowbridge residents urged to attend Bowyers appeal
A planning appeal which could result in a cinema being built on the former Bowyers site will be held at Trowbridge Civic Centre at 10am on Tuesday.
Developer Prorsus is appealing against Wiltshire Council’s decision to reject plans for a Cineworld multiplex, Morrisons, six restaurants and a pub to be built on the derelict site, in June 2012.
The Planning Inspectorate will be overseeing the hearing which is expected to last up to four days.
Prorsus saw plans for a ‘reserve’ application – which substituted the eight-screen cinema for an unspecified leisure facility and added a petrol station – accepted by the council in February 2013.
Despite this, the company has decided to pursue its initial £46m redevelopment plans. If the appeal is successful, Trowbridge could be home to two cinemas after a seven-screen Odeon opened at the £17m St Stephen’s Place Leisure Park in November.
Angus Horner, Prorsus’ MD, said: “The cinema is the sole sticking point between us and the council; we hope the inspector shares the views of the majority of Trowbridge residents and supports us.”
After the cinema plan was rejected, around 400 residents staged a protest march against Wiltshire Council’s decision, from Bowyers to County Hall.
Wiltshire and Trowbridge Town Councillor John Knight has called on supporters of the cinema plans to attend the hearing.
He said: “I’m firmly behind this application and that opinion has never changed. I will be attending the meeting and hopefully get to say my piece as the local councillor.
“I would encourage anyone who can get down to attend the appeal as it is important for the inspector to see that there are people in Trowbridge who are passionately behind these plans.”
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