CONTENTIOUS plans to relocate a Lidl to a bigger site in Cwmbran and redevelop a Stagecoach depot have been refused by Torfaen council over traffic concerns.

Councillors went against the advice of council officers who had recommended the application is approved at a meeting on Thursday.

The application proposed demolishing the existing Stagecoach depot on St David’s Road and replacing it with a new Lidl, which planned to relocate from its store in Woodside Road, Cwmbran.


A new, modern Stagecoach depot was planned in a vacant part of the site, including office spaces and vehicle servicing bays with bus parking, a fuel store and bus washing facilities.

But concerns over traffic were voiced by council planners, residents and councillors, particularly over a proposed access to the store off St David’s Road.

Cllr Stuart Ashley was among those to oppose the plans, saying he had a “queasy feeling” over the proposed access road.

“I have had ward members and residents say to me this site is a very busy road,” he said.

“They say they like the development but they do not like the road system and that seems to be the crux of the whole thing.”

Cllr Gwyn Jenkins said the roundabout close to the proposed access from St David’s Road was ‘dangerous’.

He said the proposals would “only make it worse”.

Paul Wheeldon, from the council’s highways team, said the applicants had carried out three assessments and a safety audit of the traffic arrangements.

“All these experts are telling me this junction will be safe and there should be no concerns from a highways standpoint,” he said.

Mr Wheeldon said he had concerns over the plans, but that did not have evidence to say the scheme is unacceptable.

Cllr Huw Bevan said he supported the redevelopment of the Stagecoach depot, but not the relocation of the Lidl as it could take trade away from other stores in the area.

But Cllr Jason O’Connell, while also having concerns over the proposed access, called on the committee to approve the plan.

He said there was “no justification on which to refuse”, as accident statistics did not support the concerns over highways safety.

Cllr Ron Burnett proposed supporting the recommendation to approve, but the committee voted against and for refusal.