More than a year after winning a High Court battle over the long-awaited project, St Modwen has signed up Lidl as its second anchor tenant for its 100,000 sq ft regeneration of Skelmersdale town centre.
Lidl has agreed a deal to take a 20,800 sq ft store in the centre of the proposed development, featuring car parking and an in-store bakery.
It will be the second tenant signed up to the long-awaited scheme following Reel Cinemas. However, a start date is still yet to be confirmed for the project, which is being brought forward by St Modwen in partnership with West Lancashire Council and Homes England.
Overall, it is set to deliver 50,000 sq ft of retail alongside 50,000 sq ft of leisure, restaurants, and bars.
Paul Batho, development director at St. Modwen said: “It is really positive news that we can now announce Lidl as our food retail anchor for the Skelmersdale scheme.
“This is an integral part of a long-awaited regeneration programme and we are really pleased with the prospect of bringing a new retailer to the town centre.”
Planning permission was granted in March 2015, but the project has been subject to a series of legal challenges by Skelmersdale Limited Partnership, which planned to bring forward a rival leisure scheme.
SLP was granted planning permission in 2014 for a £4m leisure extension to the centre, with restaurants and a 20,000 sq ft cinema.
The partnership took legal action when West Lancashire Council then gave approval to a nearby 100,000 sq ft retail and leisure project by St Modwen, which LCP felt threatened the viability of the Concourse project.
The High Court found against SLP after a judicial review in January 2016, and the Court of Appeal finally dismissed the challenge in December that same year.
A start date has still not been confirmed despite Lidl signing up, and local MP Rosie Cooper even went as far as to argue the developer had “forgotten” the town in February this year.