Lidl admits defeat in Wavertree
The discount supermarket giant has abandoned plans to build a store on the site of the grade-two listed Abbey Cinema for the second time following backlash over the scheme.
A spokesperson for Lidl said the company had “worked incredibly hard” to secure planning approval while respecting the existing building’s listed status.
They added: “However, due to the significant delays that we have faced since first acquiring the site, we have made the difficult decision to withdraw our application.
“We understand that this will be disappointing for those who backed our plans, and we want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who took the time to give their support.”
Lidl first lodged plans for the redevelopment of the Church Road North in April 2021. This involved demolishing the former cinema and building a 17,700 sq ft store.
At the time, the company said it was “not economically viable” to convert the building, which had previously been a Co-op.
The former cinema was then granted grade two-listed status by Historic England, scuppering the proposals.
Lidl subsequently withdrew the plans and returned last August with a revised application seeking consent to convert the building instead of knocking it down.
However, this application has also been withdrawn following “significant delays”.