Developers of a Kenilworth shopping centre are reviewing their options after planning permission to build new apartments and retail units was refused.

Warwick District Council’s Planning Committee voted to refuse a plan by Cobalt Estates to create 43 residential apartments and two new retail units on the site of Talisman Shopping Centre’s temporary car park.

Planning officers had recommended the plans be approved, but the Committee went against officers’ advice.

Wareing & Company’s Bill Wareing, spokesman for Cobalt Estates – the owners of Talisman Shopping Centre for the past 23 years, said: “It is incredibly disappointing that, after 18 months of consultation with Warwick District Council and responding to all of its requirements at considerable cost, that the Planning Committee has decided to refuse consent against the advice of Officers. A very similar larger scheme had been granted planning permission in 2017.

“During Cobalt Estate’s ownership, we have managed to attract such retailers as Waitrose, Robert Dyas and WH Smith, amongst others, to Kenilworth town centre and have also assisted all of the businesses at Talisman Shopping Centre through the Covid crisis.

“I am really disappointed that a scheme that was to bring £15 million of private investment to Kenilworth town centre, creating much needed residential accommodation for single and young people, as well as new business units, has been turned down in this manner in these difficult economic times. It feels like an opportunity missed which could have a long-lasting effect on the vitality of Kenilworth town centre, particularly having just lost the Wilko’s store.

“Cobalt Estates will now review their plans, look at the reasons for refusal and commence further discussions with Warwick District Council.”