Months of painstaking building work on a new Tesco Express building at Birchencliffe are almost complete.

Property developer, Bal Khela, who owns the site said he hoped the building on Halifax Road would be “handed over” to Tesco within days so the retail giant can begin the process of fitting out the new store.

Mr Khela said: “Things are going well and should be concluded during the early part of next month and Tesco can start their move in. It’s been an uphill struggle but we have got there in the end.”

Initially, the timetable had been for the building to be structurally complete if not in fact open for business prior to the Tour de France going past its doors.

The saga began in 2012 with the proposed demolition of The Grey Horse, which had been a fixture on the site since prior to the 1930s.

Initially Kirklees Council’s planning panel threw out the application but eventually the developers got their way and won a protracted planning battle.

Residents and councillors had expressed concerns about the potential for car accidents given that Halifax Road is one of the town’s busiest roads and the site’s proximity to Ainley Top roundabout.

And after all the planning difficulties were ironed out and The Grey Horse reduced to rubble a fresh intrigue arose.

Grey Horse pub at Birchencliffe
Grey Horse pub at Birchencliffe
 

Signs were posted on the site announcing Tesco’s bitter rivals Morrisons had applied to Kirklees Council for a liquour licence.

However, Morrisons’s tenure proved shortlived and months later a bidding war involving Sainsbury’s and Co-op resulted in Tesco reclaiming their prize.

At the time Mr Khela said: “Tesco have renegotiated and offered more money for the 20-year lease.”

In addition to the Tesco store Mr Khela is hoping to find a tenant for the 850 sq ft parcel of land adjacent to it.

He said it was in a prime spot and could have a variety of retail uses subject to planning permission.

Click here to take you back to more Huddersfield news.

Want to read, watch and hear more? You can download the FREE Examiner Apple App here, the FREE Examiner Android App here or you can view the paper as an e-edition on your Apple, Android or Kindle device by clicking here

To follow us on Twitter click here