Supermarket chain Tesco has come under renewed pressure after it was revealed its land bank could be used to build 15,000 homes, the equivalent of the new town in Ebbsfleet.
An investigation by the Guardian into Land Registry records found the high-street supermarket chain has a large swathe of land on its books previously intended for out-of-town Tesco Extra superstores.
It found the property portfolio covers 49.5m sq ft across around 310 sites that do not currently house a Tesco store in England, Scotland and Wales. The majority is undeveloped.
Tesco is under pressure from shareholders after reporting the worst sales figures in a generation.
Rival Morrisons is undertaking sale-and-leaseback of four sites worth £500m to raise cash after poor sales figures.
Both budget chains have been hit by the growth of discounters Aldi and Lidl.