New Sainsbury's store joy as £60m site to bring jobs
WORK will finally start on the £60 million Sainsbury's development site in Cross Hands in the new year.
The scheme, which is expected to create hundreds of jobs, had been on hold since August after the Welsh Government called in the plans.
There were concerns over the store giant's plans for two stores — the other being Llandeilo.
But last month Sainsbury's pulled its Llandeilo store bid after a fierce campaign, leading to the Welsh Government to handing jurisdiction back to Carmarthenshire Council.
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The news has been welcomed by county councillor Kim Thomas, who said: "It's great news for Cross Hands and the whole of the Gwendraeth Valley."
In a letter to the council the Welsh Government said: "The recent withdrawal of the Llandeilo planning application therefore changes the premise on which the original call-in recommendation was made.
"It is now for your council to determine the application as it sees fit."
Carmarthenshire Council chief executive Mark James had warned if the store did not go ahead it will hit plans to move pupils from Gwendraeth comprehensive to the Maes yr Yrfa site in Cefneithin, where £18 million is being invested in new teaching and sports facilities.
The news has been welcomed by council leader Kevin Madge.
He said: "This is a brilliant Christmas present for Carmarthenshire, particularly for young people looking for work, for education and our plans to develop Maes yr Yrfa and Gwendraeth schools, the new health centre that will bring its own health benefits, social housing and investment in the local club.
"It is a huge boost for Cross Hands and it runs alongside our ambitious plans for Cross Hands East. We are delighted that this development can now go ahead which will result in 350 direct jobs and hundreds of others during the construction phase.
"This administration is committed to jobs, growth and creation, and this development is in line with that."