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  • william reed
  • Otter garden centre to move from Torquay site

    Otter Garden Centre has confirmed it?is pulling out of the semi-derelict Focus DIY site in Torquay.

    ?The garden centre has been at the Babbacombe Road site for 30 years but has announced that it is moving to take over Styles Garden Centre in Moles Lane at Shiphay.?

    The 11 staff employed by Otter and staff at Styles will all be retained. ?The future?of the former Focus DIY site near Walls Hill is still unknown.

    ?Supermarket giants Morrisons lost their appeal against a decision by Torbay Council to turn down planning permission for the site after a four-day public inquiry last year.

    There has been speculation that The Range discount furniture store is interested in acquiring the former Focus unit, which became a Payless Store before closing in 2009. The Range has 88 stores and has announced plans to open a further 22 by September.

    A spokesman for site owners Babbacombe Holdings Ltd said it would not comment on the latest developments.

    Otter managing director?Jacqui Taylor said: ?We are moving to Styles Garden Centre in Moles Lane, which is about four miles from our current site. It is twice the size of our current site which

    ?We will be leaving on July 12 after 30 years.

    ?We are delighted because obviously the future?of the site in Torquay has empty for a few years and there have been different plans for its future, some of which did not include us.

    ?We had this opportunity to move and our team are delighted because they have had a lot of uncertainty to deal with. All 11 will be coming with us and we are keeping the current staff at Styles garden centre.?

    Otter Nurseries has been trading??across Devon for 50 years.

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