Plans for a bigger Tesco supermarket in Hook have been unveiled

Basingstoke Gazette: Paul Ridge, from Hook, looking at the plans Paul Ridge, from Hook, looking at the plans

FOOD shoppers in Hook have been taking their first look at a plan for a bigger Tesco supermarket in the village.

The supermarket giant held a public consultation for shoppers at its store in Station Road.

If approved, the expansion plan would see a new 30,000sq ft store built on the current site and land currently occupied by the Rawlings haulage firm.

The current 15,000sq ft store would be demolished to make way for car parking and a recycling centre.

The firm estimates the new supermarket would create an extra 60 jobs on top of the 136 people already employed at the Hook store.

A steady stream of shoppers looked at the plans in the entrance foyer of the store last Tuesday.

Paul Ridge, 63, of Hazel Coppice, Hook, was among those who liked the proposal.

The 63-year-old said: “I think it’s an excellent idea because it’s well used at the moment. Most days, the car park is very busy, and it’s full of people from local businesses.”

Margaret Boyle, 64, of London Road, Hook, said: “I would like the store to be bigger because at the moment, I have to go over to The Meadows in Camberley for a bigger shop.”

Beth Greenhouse, regional corporate affairs manager at Tesco, said the consultation had received 300 replies in the first two hours of the consultation.

She said: “It has been really positive. Customers have telling us for a long time that they would like a larger store.”

The plans come just months after rival Sainsbury’s made an application to build a 30,000sq ft store on land to the north east of the village, which has also been earmarked for new houses. Hart District Council has yet to decide on the Sainsbury’s application.

Miss Greenhouse denied the Tesco scheme was a response to the Sainsbury’s application, adding that the Tesco plan has been worked on for two years.

Max Whitehand, Sainsbury’s regional development executive, said: “We are aware Tesco is consulting on initial plans to extend their store on Station Road, in Hook.

“We remain committed to our proposals for a new foodstore at north east Hook, and have been greatly encouraged by the support that we have received from the local community.”

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