UNANIMOUS approval has been given for Aldi to open a new supermarket in Purbeck.

Dorset Council’s eastern planning committee granted planning permission on Wednesday, despite concerns Aldi said it was now “keen” to move forward with work to open the supermarket and that this would be done “quickly”.

Aldi wants to open 14 more stores and create hundreds of jobs in Dorset Submitted last year, the application proposed redeveloping the former Upton Oil Company petrol station site off Blandford Road.

The scheme is one of more than a dozen the German discount chain is working on in the county and is set to be the first store it has opened in Purbeck.

Hundreds of people wrote to the council in support of the planning application, welcoming plans for the first large supermarket in Upton.

Twenty-four objections were lodged, including from rival Lidl which said the supermarket would have had a detrimental impact on the town centre.

But in a statement read out at Wednesday’s meeting, its property director, Lee McCandless, said the store would offer people living in the town a “convenient and local shopping facility”.

Aldi: Full list of where they want to open new UK supermarkets “The proposed scheme will transform a vacant and unsightly brownfield site into a beneficial and economic development,” he said.

Concerns were raised by councillors about pedestrian access for people coming from the Blandford Road direction with only a refuge proposed in the middle of the road.

Despite this, councillors unanimously approved the application when they met on Wednesday, following a recommendation by planning officer Peter Walters.

Proposing that planning permission be granted, councillor Robin Cook said: “This is making really great use of a bit of wasteland that has been an eyesore for a number of years.

“It’s well linked to main routes and is not going to take visitors away from the town centre to any great degree.”

He said he “sympathised” with concerns about access and the crossing but said these issues were “not unsurmountable” and a crossing could be installed at a later date if it was deemed necessary.

In a statement, Aldi said it was “delighted” by the decision of the committee.

“We are keen to progress the plans quickly and look forward to creating at least 30 new jobs for local people, bringing much needed retail choice to Upton and providing shoppers with high quality products at everyday low prices,” it said.