PARENTS could be trapped in a Lidl lockdown following a nuclear emergency at the factory that makes Trident. 

Lidl wants to build a supermarket near Tadley, on the border of West Berkshire. 

But because the shop would be so close to AWE — where the UK’s nuclear weapons are made — councillors have raised concerns. 

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The supermarket chain is applying for planning permission from West Berkshire Council. On December 4, the eastern area planning committee voted to grant Lidl permission. 

But because council planners, who recommended refusing permission, are so concerned about the lack of an adequate emergency plan, the application will be referred for decision by the district planning committee — effectively a level higher. 

Lidl must have an emergency plan in case of a ‘major incident’ occurring at AWE Aldermaston, which would include training staff to lockdown the supermarket, with shoppers inside, for 24 hours.

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Councillor Geoff Mayes (Lib Dem, Burghfield & Mortimer) said: “If mothers and fathers trapped in the site under lockdown, what happens to their kids at schools?”

James Mitchell, representing Lidl, was asked why there wasn’t already a satisfactory emergency plan. 

Cllr Ross Mackinnon (Con, Bradfield) said: “I would’ve thought you would be very keen to present an adequate emergency plan to us. Why should I be confident that an acceptable plan will be produced, if one has not been produced by this point?”

Mr Mitchell said Lidl has produced a draft, and the council has commented on it. He said: “The issues have been whittled down to a small number, and that’s what gives me confidence. 

“We’ve made significant progress in a short period of time. I don’t think we’re very far away from getting there.”

The plans have had huge support from local people, because Tadley only has one supermarket: a Sainsbury’s which several people say is too expensive. 

At the start of the meeting, a town councillor from Tadley, Richard Charlick, was refused the chance to speak. Cllr Alan Law (Con, Basildon) said: “I’m sorry but if you wanted to speak, you had to get your application in by Tuesday of last week.”

But Mr Charlick kept talking. 

After Cllr Law asked him to leave, Mr Charlick said: “We don’t want to be ripped off anymore by supermarkets. [Sainsbury’s] is an expensive place, and we’re not all wealthy. Think of the poor people for a change. Bunch of Tories.”