In a submission to the planning application currently live on the Highland Council e-planning site the ANB state:
"The ANB objects to this application on three specific grounds:
• it is inconsistent and in conflict with the existing conditions which were applied to the initial development on this site and have been endorsed by an Appeal Reporter and Ministers. These conditions are a material consideration and and are still applicable in respect of any and all other proposed retail development at this location;
• if granted, this application will further damage the existing Nairn High Street retail businesses, and thus will undermine the very reasons which led to the original conditions being applied
• the granting of consent for retail premises at this location would not be in compliance with national government planning policy as set out in the “Town Centres First” approach which is now embodied in Policy 1 of the Inner Moray Firth Local Development Plan"
They then go on to refer to planning conditions imposed on the Sainsbury's development, including: "4. No part of the development shall be used as a café, restaurant (other than staff café or restaurant), post office or pharmacy."
The submission concludes:
" Our view is not only that the current application directly breaches the conditions already in place on specified types of retail development at this location. The ANB also regards this proposal for a drivein/take-away restaurant and for a Class 1 retailer of non-food products as likely, indeed certain, to inflict further damage on the viability of the existing High Street. To approve this application would thus contradict the reasoning for, and undermine the purposes of the conditions already in place – which are to preserve the vitality of the town centre and the provision of local retail facilities elsewhere in the town
In terms of broader planning policy, in recent years the Government has adopted the principle of ‘Town centre first’ in terms of development planning. This has been incorporated into the current (July 2015) Inner Moray Firth Local Development Plan. Because the present proposal may – indeed in our view will – have an adverse effect on Nairn Town centre, it does not comply with para 2.8 and Policy 1 of the IMFLDP.
Every developer will make claims as to how their proposals will not result in any net detrimental effects on the local town centres, yet no one seems to be able to cite any examples of out of town shopping areas actually improving the local High Street. What we have seen in Nairn Town Centre since the above development was put in place is a decline in trade with people moving to the out of town location. To combat this the ANB are working with our Councillors and others to develop a BID (Business Improvement District) to enable an upturn in trade within the town through focussed cosmetic improvements as well as enhance marketing and collaborative working, all of which would be put at risk through a further decline in trade"
You can read the ANB submission in full and other objections and statements of support on the Highland Council e-planning site here under the comments and document tabs here.