PLANS for a new £700k Co-op store in Gourock will not be decided upon until next month after the hearing was delayed.

The proposal for a new branch on Cardwell Road at the former Fishertrucks site have been earmarked for approval by Municipal Buildings bosses.

Councillors were due to decide on the application last week but the meeting has been postponed after a delay in circulating vital papers to members of the planning board.

The retail company unveiled its bid earlier this year for a new shop on the site of the van business, with its existing shops Cardwell Road and Shore Street to be axed.

The company would demolish the Fishertrucks site and erect a two-storey building with a 20-space car park.

A handful of objections have been received, with some people claiming there is no need for the store.

Other residents fear an increase in traffic, noise and pollution and a loss in property value.

But planning bosses have insisted the development is acceptable, describing it as 'positive and welcome addition'.

In a report, planning officer Stuart Jamieson said: “The visual improvement of the site will result in benefits to nearby residents.

“There will be no overshadowing of nearby properties nor are there any privacy implications from windows on the proposed building.

“Compared to the existing garage on the site, noise from the premises will largely be limited to the activities of delivery vehicles and customer car movements.

“I am satisfied the proposed building will be a positive and welcome addition to the streetscene.”

The Co-op’s agents, Dickie and Moore, say the current two Co-op shops “no longer best serve customers”, with congestion being a major issue at both sites.

The company has insisted this can’t be resolved by reorganising the layout of either outlet.

They added: “Customers expect supermarkets to provide an attractive shopping environment with suitable space, allowing them to undertake shopping trips efficiently and in relative comfort.

“The existing Co-op stores at Gourock do not allow for this and the Co- operative Group is therefore keen to meet customer expectations and demands in Gourock by providing a single better store with an improved environment, retail offer and facilities.”

The owners of Fishertrucks, brothers Johnny and Neil Fisher, have said they will be moving to a new location after operating from Cardwell Road for 40 years.

They revealed they would be looking to downsize their operation and would no longer be offering van rentals, focusing on sales, repairs and servicing at a new base.