A RETAIL giant dismissed claims it could be involved in a major development.

Britton Construction has submitted plans for a scheme in Clacton which would include a cinema complex and supermarket.

The developer said it was talking to Asda about it running the supermarket in the Clacton Gateway scheme.

But Asda distanced itself from the project, saying it was approached, but was never interested. Instead, it is looking to demolish a Co-op store in Clacton and build an Asda there.

A deal is already in place with the Co-op, if the scheme is given planning approval. An Asda spokesman said: “Asda was approached by a Britton Construction representative in the hope of bringing us on board. This approach was never followed up by Asda, much less did it lead to advanced negotiations.

“Asda has had an interest in opening in Clacton for some time and is fully committed to our aspirations regarding the Co-op site in Bull Hill Road.

“We believe it is the best location.

Further details of our plans will be confirmed and publicised soon.”

A Britton Construction spokesman said: “In 2003, Asda was outbid by Tesco to be the superstore anchor at Clacton’s Brook Retail Park. With knowledge of Asda’s unresolved requirement, we sought to identify an effective location to bring them to Clacton.

“During 2012, emerging plans for Clacton Gateway were put to Asda. It liked our location and encouraged us to provide its ideal requirement for an 80,000sq ft store, 500 parking spaces and petrol station.

It continued to consider the opportunity in 2013, while awaiting internal decisions.

“We are disappointed it has now chosen to try to get planning consent for a scheme that delivers only a store for it and nothing by way of wider benefits for the community.”