SAINSBURY'S has been given the green light to redevelop their store in Nantwich.

Cheshire East Council's Strategic Planning Board granted permission at a meeting on Wednesday last week.

The plans to replace the premises with a new larger store were unanimously approved by members.

Sainsbury's application had been deferred by members in July, as they requested further information and more time to consider the proposals.

The plans had been opposed by town councillors who felt that the store would impact on small business in the town.

Clr Arthur Moran said: "This is a most important decision as it could have a huge retail impact on Nantwich and Crewe.

"The traders have had a hard time and are hanging in there, hoping for a better Christmas.

"I believe the scheme will have an adverse affect on Nantwich town centre and the traders."

Middlewich Road resident Christine Evans spoke in support of the application at the committee meeting.

She said she had previously objected to the application but was pleased at the changes that had been made to the plans and now fully supports the proposals.

Mrs Evans said the store was a good amenity for Nantwich, particularly the northern side of the town, and a big employer in the area.

Councillor Chris Thorley said Sainsbury's and council planning officers had improved the proposals since the July meeting.

Jo Try, regional development executive, who heads the Sainsbury's new store property team in the north of England, said: "We're delighted that Cheshire East Council's Strategic Planning Board was minded to grant planning permission for this important development in Nantwich.

"Members clearly saw the hard work that has gone in to addressing the concerns of members, officers and the public, particularly since the last Planning Board meeting in July.

"We have taken on board the comments of local residents, businesses, the Civic Society and Nantwich Town Council throughout the process in order to design the best possible scheme.

"The store will create around 75 new jobs in addition to the 330 staff already working in store.

"The revamped store should provide a much improved shopping experience for customers."

Preparation work on the store could start in early 2010, with the development expected to be completed by mid-late 2011.