REJECTED plans for a Morrisons supermarket in Christchurch have been appealed by the developers hoping for a reprieve.

The scheme for the food store on the site of Beagle Techonology in Stony Lane was refused earlier this year by Christchurch council.

It was the third time the revised plans had gone before the council’s planning committee, with the first decision thrown out by the council in 2012 after threats of legal action.

Concerns about the ‘lack of evidence’ in a retail report commissioned by the council and put together by Nathaniel Lichfield and Partners led to the refusal.

Planning agent Ken Parke, representing Simons Developments, Beagle and Optimisation Developments, said he saw no reason why the appeal shouldn’t be successful.

It will be decided by written representations and is likely to take around six months, he added.

It comes just weeks after an appeal for a food store at Meteor Retail Park in Somerford was approved by an inspector.

Developers of the Somerford site, Brookhouse, who were refused permission for revised plans in January, wanted to amalgamate two proposed retail units on the site into the main food store, without increasing the size of the total retail space.

Mr Parke added: “The Meteor appeal was published and there was lots of evidence in that which would support the Morrisons appeal.”

John Taylor, managing director of Beagle, said: “We are hopeful that the inspector will realise the suitability of this site for a large format food store. A successful appeal will help revitalise Christchurch by drawing trade into the town and will help secure Beagle jobs in the borough for the future.”

Giles Moir, development management manager for Christchurch council said they would be submitting a statement supporting the reasons for refusal of the application.

The food store would create 300 supermarket jobs and enable Beagle to move to a new site within Christchurch to expand their business.