A COUNCILLOR has welcomed the proposed move for Lidl to come to Romsey, but has confirmed it would not back the scheme if it was 'out of town'.

Following the news that Lidl has pinpointed nine locations across the Southampton area, one being in Romsey, there was an uproar of opinion from Romsey residents.

Now, planning portfolio holder, Cllr Nick Adams-King said he would welcome the Lidl to the town, as long as it was within the town centre.

He said:“We need to be clear that there has not been any site allocated for a new Lidl - we will look for that in the next local plan.

“We won’t be looking to have it out of town as we are investing a lot into Romsey Town Centre.

“We would want it in the Town Centre and I don’t think it would go down well with public support if it was out of town."

The other stores include two in Eastleigh, five in Southampton and two in Winchester and Lymington.

Cllr Adams-King added: "There is currently no site allocated in the Local Plan for an additional supermarket in or near Romsey. If a site were to be identified it would need to form part of our next Local Plan, which should be completed by 2022/3.

"However, the priority for the Council is supporting and enhancing our town centre. Out of town shopping provision does not form part of our plans. We have already invested significantly in Romsey town centre and will continue to do so in the coming years.

"For these reasons I cannot see a situation where we would identify a site for an 'out of town' supermarket and I would not support any proposal that would draw shoppers away from the town centre and the businesses operating there.

"Whilst I'd welcome extra choice for shoppers, that additional provision must be situated in the town centre."

This comes as Councillor Mark Cooper, who represents Romsey Tadburn, also welcomed the store in the Town Centre.

He said: “A Lidl in a town centre, or edge of town centre, location would be welcome in Romsey.

"A new Lidl must be in or very near to the Town Centre and there must be adequate off-street parking.”