A NEW Aldi supermarket could open in Abingdon after plans were unveiled by a property firm in place of a proposed Marks and Spencer which has now been scrapped.

Mays Properties Ltd had secured planning permission in September for a Marks and Spencer Foodhall at Fairacres Retail Park, Marcham Road.

Now the firm says it would no longer be 'commercially viable' for the foodhall and will instead look to site an Aldi store in its place.

Director Richard May said: "We were very excited by Marks and Spencer’s interest in the Fairacres Retail Park.

"Whilst we subsequently obtained planning approval for a new foodstore which would have met their requirements, we have, unfortunately, been unable to agree terms with Marks and Spencer that would be commercially viable.

"We are very pleased, however, to now announce that a deal has been agreed with Aldi, the multi award winning supermarket retailer.”

Planning approval is now being sought for the proposed Aldi and an application has been submitted to the Vale of White Horse District Council.

The application seeks to vary existing outline planning permission for the original plan for a Marks and Spencer Foodhall.

Mr May said that he was confident that planning permission would be granted for the new Aldi.

He said: "Circumstances have not changed and whilst Aldi require a marginally bigger store, we are very confident that the council will again agree with our findings that there remain no suitable sites within Abingdon Town Centre to accommodate a supermarket of the size proposed and that it will not result in any harm to the town centre.”