Laker Developments wins revised consent in Dover

Dover District Council Cabinet also agrees preparatory work for Compulsory Purchase Order

Dover District Council took key decisions this week to progress the St James’s development in Dover town centre.  On Thursday (19th December), the Planning Committee unanimously approved the latest planning application for the development, which will create 120,000 sq. ft. of mixed-use retail and leisure with parking for 445 cars.

The revised planning application reflected amendments to the scheme, most notably the change of use brought about by the Cineworld agreement to lease and operate a 21,000 sq. ft. six screen cinema as part of the development.

Last week, Marks & Spencer announced they had signed up as the anchor retail tenant at St James’s with a 16,000 sq. ft. M&S Simply Food store.  Further announcements about future tenants are expected in the New Year.

Following the Planning Committee’s decision, a Special Meeting of DDC’s Cabinet was held today (20th December) which authorised Council Officers to proceed with preparations for a potential Compulsory Purchase Order for land not currently in the Council’s ownership.  In addition, Cabinet also agreed the preparatory work that would see the permanent closure of Russell Street at its junction with Townwall Street.

Cllr Paul Watkins, Leader of Dover District Council, said: “There is real momentum behind this landmark development for Dover town centre with two exciting anchor tenants now signed up. Today we have taken key decisions to enable work to start on the development as soon as is practically possible.  Discussions to secure agreement with third party land owners are ongoing.”