Will the Dorridge precedent inspire residents and organisations who supported Sainsbury’s original plans for the Selly Oak Lapal Canal link, and are disappointed that application  2012/01565/PA does not offer a provision for the previously promised Lapal Canal link across the Battery Park site?

Sainsbury selly oak canal Ivor Caplan

The Solihull News on May 3rd reports that pressure from residents, councillors and MP Caroline Spelman led to a ‘dramatic u-turn’ with regard to its Dorridge decision. It has announced the completion of a detailed review and as a result, amendments to the scheme will be submitted to the Council for consideration.


Sainsbury’s with developer Land Securities resubmitted a plan to Birmingham City Council which appears to exclude a ‘properly watered’ Lapal Canal, replacing it with a green walkway around the edge of their site.

However this is not ‘up for decision’ in May: the revised planning application will be the subject of a public consultation from 2nd May 2013 –16th July

Sainsbury selly oak applicationTo see this on site follow the links from the council website.

Campaigning points

IWA logo-headerThe Inland Waterways Association gives some political and technical planning points which might help individuals, groups, Selly Oak MP Steve McCabe, councillors Brigid Jones, Karen McCarthy and David Radcliffe.

An environmentally friendly hydrogen-fuelled shuttle service could be offered as proposed by Professor Rex Harris here: http://ourbirmingham.org/?p=965

A more general viewpoint comes from non-commercial canal site Canalscene which describes:

  • an extended and widened waterfront for the Worcester and Birmingham canal with restaurants, bars and cafes;
  • a rerouted section of the largely dry Lapal Canal (also called the Dudley No2 Canal) passing through the centre of the site to the boundary of Selly Oak Park where the Lapal Canal Trust is working towards restoring the Harborne Wharf.

Ending: “This is great news for the local population as the (derelict site) will be regenerated with knock on effects for the Bristol Road area. But it is also great news for boaters who will be able to stop off for high grade eating and shopping when navigating the busy Worcester and Birmingham Canal”.

As the government’s plain English guide to the 2011 Localism Act says: “We think that power should be exercised at the lowest practical level – close to the people who are affected by decisions, rather than distant from them”.