AFTER two refusals Home Bargains are hoping it's third time lucky with new £6 million plans for a site in Dunfermline.

Fife Council previously rejected an application by TJ Morris Ltd - the parent company - to develop land at Dunlin Drive and they lost their appeal to the Scottish Government.

But they're back for another go with fresh proposals for a shop of 1,951 square metres in size and four smaller 'neighbourhood' units, totalling 418 sqm, which would create 52 full-time jobs.

If approved, the new Dunlin Drive retail centre would boast 91 car parking spaces, including wheelchair parking and electric vehicle charging spaces, 12 cycle spaces and a new pedestrian pathway.

READ MORE: Plans for a £6m hub in Dalgety Bay have taken a step forward

“The proposed development will have a number of significant economic benefits for the surrounding area and region,” developers claimed. 

As well as 52 full time jobs once the retail centre is up and running, TJ Morris say it will also generate construction jobs and represents an investment of £6m into the local area.  

The firm held public consultation events in Dunfermline in February and if the plans get the go-ahead it will be the second Home Bargains store in the city, adding to the outlet in Carnegie Retail Park.

A planning statement on their behalf went on: “The new units would also improve consumer choice in terms of retail provision, resulting in increased competition to benefit the community. 

“The proposal will bring this long term vacant development site into active use, improving the existing retail offer in the area and creating a vibrant new destination for the local community.” 

In September 2022 the council's west and central planning committee refused plans for a Home Bargains store, the application also included an outdoor garden centre, on the grounds it would have a detrimental impact on existing and future city centre trade.

There were 173 objections and 30 comments of support.

An appeal to the government failed in June last year.

Mary Stewart, from the council's planning service, previously explained that while permission for retail use had been given for the site previously, this was for a different purpose.

She had added: "The previous permission provided for local community-based facilities which did include a number of small retail units really designed to serve the locality in the sense of a local neighbourhood centre."

TJ Morris believe the tweaks they have made since then should make their new plans more acceptable.

So far they have attracted 92 objections and 23 letters of support.  Their statement said: “The general sense from the public exhibition was that the public are keen for investment in the area, including job creation and some individuals liked the idea of having smaller neighbourhood retail units and increased planting.

“The main concerns focused on the scale of the Home Bargains retail unit, potential for traffic impact, and impact on biodiversity.”  The plans include a three metre high acoustic fence to the south of the site, to ensure there will be no detrimental impact on nearby residents, and the firm is “willing to discuss how they might be able to support local charities”.

They may also consider letting the community “take charge” of one of the neighbourhood retail units for community uses.  “TJ Morris is committed to ongoing investment in Fife and supporting the regional economy’s continuing recovery from the recent economic challenges resulting from the pandemic,” they concluded.