In November 2011 Sainsbury's submitted a detailed planning application for a new 32,000 sq ft supermarket and an outline application for a 54-acre country park in Whittlesey. Tesco announced its interest in the Eastrea Road site but it has also picked up permission on a site in Station Road.
Fenland District Council considered the two planning applications for new Tesco and Sainsbury’s stores on adjacent out-of-town sites on Eastrea Road on 9th May 2012 but deferred the applications. In July Sainsbury's published a report that casts doubt on the viability of the Station Road store by detailing the expected hold ups to motorists caused by the level crossing.
In August planning officers recommended that Councillors should support Tesco and not Sainsbury's. However, on 29th August Councillors voted to approve Sainsbury's application and reject Tesco's application.
However, on 19th September the council’s planning committee met again and decided to approve planning permission to Tesco to build a supermarket in Eastrea Road.
On 9th October Fenland Council admitted its planning process was "shot to pieces" and Councillors were under investigation as it announced that all three supermarket decisions had been scrapped.