TWO applications for a new Aldi store and 128 homes in Southampton were last night unanimously refused by councillors.

The first proposal, for the discount chain and a Starbucks coffee drive-thru, at the site next to the former East Point Centre in Thornhill were refused by Southampton City Council’s planning committee for its poor layout and unsafe access.

The neighbouring application, for the Bursledon Road residential scheme, was also refused, with councillors unhappy with the amount of affordable housing proposed.

The housing scheme, from applicant JT Consultancy Limited, included 21 houses (20 three-bed and one four-bed), and 107 flats (29 one-bed and 78 two-bed) and would’ve included the demolition of the former Hightown Secondary School, which closed in the 1980s.

Nevertheless, despite its refusal, locals gave their support for the planned Aldi store.

Trixie Neilson, of Warburton Road, said: “This is something that has been needed for a long time. [It will mean that] the elderly and young families at this end of the estate will be able to walk there.”

Rachael Miles, of Hightown Towers, said: “What a wonderful idea to have a really good shop planned up this end for the community. [It will mean] more jobs coming to the estate and bringing money to this deprived area.

“I for one am looking forward to having it here.”

As reported, plans for the site, previously home to the East Point education centre, had been discussed for several years.

The site was once touted as the future home of Itchen College, but the proposals were scrapped.

Part of the site was later developed into the new East Point Community Centre, which opened in 2011.

But the £10 million building was shut in 2014 after it was put into administration. It was then saved, and renamed High Point Centre in 2014.

Last year, plans were approved to turn the remaining part of the site into a new 114 flat complex, along with 36 family homes.