SUPERMARKET giant Tesco has confirmed it will not be building a new store in Marston, to the great delight of campaigners.

Residents have campaigned against the chain and its plans to open a convenience store in Old Marston Road since 2009.

Two plans for a Tesco Express to be opened on the site of The Friars Pub were rejected by Oxford City Council, the chain successfully appealed the decision in 2011.

Now the chain has confirmed to business owners that they will not be opening a store due to a lack of resources.

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Labour MP for Oxford East Andrew Smith inquired about the state of the site, which has remained derelict since 2011, and received confirmation on Friday of Tesco’s decision not to go ahead with the store.

He said: “The announcement will come as welcome news to the many people in the neighbourhood who opposed the Tesco development, which was only given the go-ahead on appeal after the council rejected it.”

City councillor for Marston Mick Haines said: “I’m over the moon.

“It’s been a long battle and I’m especially happy for the Post Office and Costcutters, that could’ve been damaged by the Tesco’s opening.

“The site was left there for years and hopefully it can be put to good use now.”

Member of Marston Residents Group 58-year-old Alan Foulkes added: “I’m absolutely delighted that Tesco have pulled out of Marston for money reasons.

“The whole plan was ill thought out from the start. The parking and traffic issues that could’ve been caused would be horrendous.”

Mr Foulkes said: “I think what is important is that the local people of Marston are asked what they want on the site.

“Personally, I’d like to see some housing and maybe a cafe.”

Mr Haines said that he would like to see social housing on the site, or a Wetherspoons to replace a number of pubs that have closed in Marston in recent years.

Spokeswoman for Tesco Fflur Sheppard said: “Our priority now is to work with the local planning authority and key stakeholders over the coming weeks to find alternative uses for the site’s future, so that it may be brought back into use as soon as possible for the benefit of the local community.”

Mr Smith added: “I dare say Tesco will be looking for as much money as they can get for the plot, which of course presently only has planning permission for a supermarket. “The city council, as the planning authority, should consult with local residents on the future of the site and the use of its planning powers to secure the best possible outcome for the local community.”

Last September, Tesco warned that its profits were overstated by £250m and three directors are suspended as a result of the accounting “black-hole”.

In January, the supermarket announced its plan to close 43 stores and put 2,000 jobs at risk.

This included the Tesco Metro in Bicester where 56 people will be made redundant.

Then earlier this month, chief executive Dave Lewis announces plans to slash 10,000 jobs across 3,300 stores nationwide.