A LEGAL battle to halt a Tesco superstore being built has been quashed, leaving a rival store with a bill for £10,000.

Tesco was given permission to build in Station Road on the border of Manningree and Lawford last July.

But rival chain the Co-operative Society, which is based in Riverside Avenue East in the town, lodged an application for a judicial review with the High Court, stating the permission was “unlawful” and “irrational”.

Co-op bosses said legal action would be taken if a list of demands were not met including that the application go back before the planning committee.

But the council argued the accusations were unfounded and opted not to hold round-table talks with both parties.

A judge has now refused the judicial review application on all of the ten points put forward.

Carlo Guglielmi, Tendring’s planning boss, said: “I am so pleased with the decision. We have maintained all along that the application has gone through the democratic process.

”It is quite pitiful. The Co-op had three years to come up with objections, but waited until the last minute to do this, It was clutching at straws.

“We will be seeking costs. This is public money we are talking about.”

The judge ordered the Co-op to pay £10,000 costs for Tesco, and advised Tendring Council to apply to the High Court for its costs.

However, the Co-op has vowed the fight will go on.

Roger Grosvenor, group general manager for trading for the East of England Co-operative Society, said: “While we were disappointed by the initial decision our application seeking leave to appeal was declined, we have instructed our legal advisors to ask for a review of the situation and put forward a renewal application.

“We believe the decision made and the processes used by Tendring Council were flawed and will continue seeking to overturn the decision.”

Louise Gosling, Tesco’s regional corporate affairs manager, said: “We remain confident Tendring Council’s decision to support our plans for Manningtree was robust.

“We look forward to working with them to deliver the plans as soon as possible.”