A Flagship Sainsbury’s for Greenwich Peninsula

In 2017, the Webmeister comments:

The store described here opened to the public on September 14th, 1999.

Despite its eco-credentials, after only 15 years, it was decided to move Sainsbury’s provision to a new site on the Charlton Riverside site off Bugsby’s Way and to demolish this building in its entirity, including the eco-garden**, with the loss of life by bulldozer of all the wildlife therein, and to replace it with a new building to be occupied by IKEA.


The regeneration of the Greenwich Peninsula promises to be one of the most innovative and forward-thinking projects in the UK. Due to its importance for the Millennium celebrations, it is set to have a high profile at national and even international levels. As part of the development of the Greenwich Peninsula, Sainsbury’s is developing Britain’s first ‘low-energy’ foodstore close to the proposed Millennium Village.

The principle of using the land for food and non-food retailing was first established when Greenwich Borough Council gave an outline planning consent to former site owner, British Gas, in December 1996. Sainsbury’s then submitted planning details to Greenwich Borough Council relating to that outline consent. Sainsbury’s submission followed a successful bid in a competitive tender run by the owners of the Greenwich Peninsula, English Partnerships – the Government’s urban regeneration body Sainsbury’s was selected as the preferred developer of the site from amongst several of the UK’s leading food retailers. As well as bringing a foodstore to the Greenwich Peninsula, Sainsbury’s is also building a Homebase store as part of the associated non-food retail developments (Comet and Jewsons).

Greenwich Council approved details of the two stores in January 1999 and Sainsbury’s began construction immediately.



The development is made up of the following elements..

• A 3,112 sq m (33,500 sq ft) net sales area Sainsbury’s ‘low-energy’ foodstore

• An in-store bakery and delicatessen and over 20,000 product lines

• Customer toilets. including disabled and baby-changing facilities

• Surface car parking to serve the supermarket, non-food retail and leisure development, with reserved spaces for disabled drivers and extra-wide parking spaces close to the store entrance for customers with young children

• A coffee shop and restaurant


Sainsbury’s prides itself on achieving high architectural standards. Many of the Company’s new stores have gained major awards for their design – for example. the Company won the 1991 British Urban Regeneration Association Best Practice Award for its Wolverhampton store. Sainsbury’s proposal for the Greenwich Peninsula store takes this commitment a significant step further. The Greenwich Peninsula food store – the product of two years’ research and development – will be the UK’s first ‘low-energy’ supermarket. It will incorporate a wide range of new technologies. The store aims to be up to 50 per cent more energy efficient than a standard supermarket and will incorporate many design features which could become commonplace in food stores in the next century.


• Naturally lit by an arching glass and steel roof• Designed to have underfloor heating which takes heat from the store’s refrigeration systems and reuses it to heat the store; the store will also be naturally ventilated instead of using ‘energy intensive’ air conditioning• Surrounded by earth mounds along its sides which will help insulate the building and prevent heat loss and heat gain. as well as giving the store a dramatic curved appearance. There will also be heavily landscaped earth mounding to the rear of the store, which will provide an attractive high quality frontage to Bugsby’s Way, as well as limit the view into the service area and reduce any noise from deliveries• Designed with a nature area, including a nature trail network of broadwalks and paths through various habitats such as woodland, wildflower meadow, wetland, pond and reed beds**• Built with reinforced concrete walls so that it is cool in summer yet warm in winter – it will act as a giant storage heater, absorbing heat in the day and releasing it at night• Able to recycle water collected from the building’s roof. This water will be treated to remove impurities and then passed through the store s own natural reed bed for a final ‘clean’ . The water will then be stored in a pond located behind the store. This recycled water will also be used throughout the summer months for watering the grass, shrubs and trees within the development• A test bed to explore the use of renewable energy – wind turbines and solar-powered cells will generate power which can be saved in batteries and used to light store signs at night• Equipped to allow customers to shop by the Internet, telephone or fax


Sainsbury’s has been continuously represented in the Greenwich area for over one hundred years and is proud of its long association with this part of south east London. Its first store opened in Blackheath Village in 1896 and another in Lee Green Road in 1913. However, at present, people living in the area and immediately around the Peninsula have little choice in the way of modern supermarkets.

Sainsbury’s scheme will address this and provide additional shopping choice. In addition to serving people already living in the area and offering them wider choice, the new store will also meet demand from the people who will live in the proposed Millennium Village and other residential areas on the Peninsula.

Location of the site in orange


Access to the site by foot. cycle and public transport – including access for those with mobility difficulties – is a priority for Sainsbury’s. There will be a network of pedestrian footpaths linking the Millennium Village and Bugsby s Way to the store. There will also be a footbridge linking the store to the western side of the A102(M). It will be possible to cycle right up to the store entrance as a dedicated cycle lane will be provided in front of both the supermarket and the non-food retail development, linking into Bugsby’s Way and the rest of the proposed development, on the Greenwich Peninsula. Covered and secure cycle racks will also be provided near the store entrance. At present, no regular bus services run onto the northern part of the Peninsula. To address this issue – and in view of anticipated demand for bus services as a result of the proposed residential developments – Sainsbury’s have consulted with London Transport and the London Borough of Greenwich about diverting newly planned bus services through the site, some of which will stop close to the store entrance.


The site is bordered by the A102(M) Blackwall Tunnel Approach to the south, the New Horn Lane link to the east and Bugsby’s Way to the north. Vehicles will be able to enter the site at three points. Customers’ cars will be able to enter from the new Horn Lane Link to the south east and via Bugsby’s Way at the north-western end of the site. Delivery vehicles will enter through a separate entrance off Bugsby’s Way serving both the food and non-food elements of the development. The road network on the Peninsula is being improved. English Partnerships has already completed the building of a new dual carriageway – the New Horn Lane link – which will link the A102(M) with Bugsby’s Way. This will help to ensure that the road network on the Peninsula is able to meet the anticipated traffic movements for all the developments proposed in this area.



Sainsbury’s Greenwich Peninsula food store will create around 400 full-time and part-time job opportunities for local people, whilst the Homebase development will create a further 150 job opportunities. The Sainsbury’s Group has a policy of recruiting local people and the process would start approximately six months before the stores open. Sainsbury’s will work closely with the local job service and look to set up a recruitment office in the Greenwich area. All staff will receive full training in existing Sainsbury’s stores in the area. Sainsbury’s has an equal opportunities policy which aims to ensure that all job applicants and employees receive equal treatment regardless of gender, race, colour, ethnic origin, religion. marital status, sexual orientation or disability


Sainsbury’s, in association with English Partnerships, held a public exhibition for local people to view the proposals at Christchurch Forum, Trafalgar Road, London SE10 9EQ in late May 1998.


The new Sainsbury’s store on the Greenwich Peninsula will;

• Create Britain’s first ‘low-energy’ superstore• Meet the demand for food shopping generated in the locality and by new residential development at the Millennium Village and on the remainder of the Peninsula• Take supermarket design a significant step forward in terms of innovation and design• Generate up to 400 full-time and part-time job opportunities for local people as well as up to 150 job opportunities from the Sainsbury’s Homebase development• Provide Greenwich with an attractive and conveniently located foodstore• Offer a wider range of quality goods than is currently available locally


Retail Operator/Developer
Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Ltd and J. Sainsbury Developments Ltd

Chetwood Associates

Planning Consultant
Town Planning Consultancy

Landscape Architect
Derek Lovejoy Partnership

Traffic Consultant
The Denis Wilson Partnership

Communications Consultant

For further information, please contact:

Vicky Cleden, Sainsbury’s 0171 695 0012
Glen Davey, English Partnerships 0171 730 9399
Paul Stelmaszczykl/Jenny Marshall/Ben Copithorne, Camargue 0171 6367366

Taken from a publicity flyer published by Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Ltd.
My Thanks to Camargue (Paul Stelmaszczyk) and Sainsburys for permission to use the text and graphics contained in that leaflet.

Web’d by David Riddle
e-mail: dpreeyore@gmail.com

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