Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg has thrown his weight behind a campaign opposing plans for a new Tesco Express store in his constituency.

The Liberal Democrat leader and MP for Sheffield Hallam has written to the council highlighting a number of objections to the plans raised by local residents. Tesco has resurrected plans for an Express store at the site of an old garage in the Parkhead area of the city. The plans were rejected three years ago due to traffic concerns.

More than 1,000 people have signed a petition against the new application.

In his letter to Sheffield council, Clegg outlined his constituents’ concerns that the plans will exacerbate existing traffic problems in the area and harm local businesses.

“They tell me some local shops, that have provided a service to the community for many years, will struggle to co-exist if a Tesco is built. Moreover, my constituent say the area is already well served for supermarkets,” he says.

“Many constituents tell me that the proposed Tesco will be an over-development on a relatively smrall site. [They] have therefore indicated to me that the proposed development will be out of character for the area which is largely a residential one.”

The MP adds: “I would ask that you take into account the above view of local residents when deciding whether or not to approve this proposal.”

A number of retailers argue that the backing of their local MP has benefited their business in various ways.