Dobbies aims for Southport outlet

New Lancashire store planned by Dobbies.

Dobbies is hoping to build a multi-million-pound destination garden centre in Southport. The Midlothian-based company’s property development director Stuart Wright said Dobbies will consult the public in an attempt to smooth the way before an application for the first time in England. “We’re going to a pre-application public consultation exercise with local people. Government planning directives have suggested we consult widely before putting in a planning application. “Southport is a very strong horticultural town. It’s very well known for its flower show and horticultural traditions. It’s got a large catchment and we’d like to work with them.” The designer is Edinburgh-based Mill Urban Design. Builder Henry Boot started work on Dobbies’ £12m Sheffield development this month. A further application has been filed at Lisburn, Northern Ireland. * Horticulture Week understands Dorset-based Golden Acres Nursery is ready to sign a deal to buy another garden centre. It will be the firm’s fourth outlet. Operations director Simon Edwards declined to comment on any possible purchase.

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