Supermarket deal brings JCB legacy plans to life

JCB Chairman Lord Bamford, right, pictured with Waitrose Head of Retail Operations Mark Gifford, as news is announced of a new store creating up to 180 jobs.

THE redevelopment of a former JCB factory in Uttoxeter today took a giant leap forward with news that Waitrose is planning a new store on part of the site, creating up to 180 new jobs.

JCB has agreed in principle to sell approximately two acres of the 22 acre site to enable the retailer to open store, subject to being granted final detailed planning consent. It is planned that the new supermarket  could open in time for Christmas 2015. 

JCB Chairman Lord Bamford said, “The proposed Waitrose store is a major step forward in the redevelopment of the former JCB Heavy Products site. It is and always has been my intention that this development leaves a legacy to Uttoxeter given my family’s long association with the town and this site in particular. While recent economic circumstances mean it has taken longer to advance than I would have liked, I’m delighted that the scheme is now moving forward in a way that will eventually contribute to the wider renaissance of Uttoxeter.” 

Production at the old Heavy Products site finished in 2008 and the factory relocated to a new £40 million site next to the A50 in Uttoxeter.  Lord Bamford is taking a personal involvement in the plans and instigated a Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) design contest to ensure the redevelopment is of “the highest possible standard.” 

London-based McDowell + Benedetti was selected as the winner of the competition and drew up plans for the 22-acre site which include housing, retail and commercial. There will be 257 new houses built on the site – including large villas, detached properties and town houses – and it is hoped that construction work on some of the properties will begin later this year.