While councillors in Cornwall may have refused a bid to build a massive out of town shopping centre near St Austell, the final decision may be taken many miles from Cornwall.

With Mercian Developments Ltd saying that there are "plenty of reasons to appeal", the plan may eventually "not be determined by local councillors", according to Liberal Democrat MP Stephen Gilbert.

The BBC are reporting that Simon Hoare, from Mercian Developments, said there were reasons to appeal as the company had spent time and money on the proposals for the past three years.

Adding that he said: "The idea that a refusal would then clear the decks and we would we disappear up the A390 in a cloud of dust is very far from the mark."

The controversial Coyte Farm development was refused amid dramatic scenes at Cornwall Council on Thursday.

The vote went down to the wire, with the application rejected 11 votes to 10, with the chairman of the strategic planning committee Rob Nolan, a Truro councillor, having the casting vote.

People for and against the plan for a £100m out-of-town shopping centre were on hand to watch the debate unfold at New County Hall.

The application would have seen Mercian Developments Ltd build on a 100-acre site at Coyte Farm, on the outskirst of St Austell.

Marks & Spencer and Sainsbury's were highlighted as potential tenants, alongside a Next store, a petrol station, and a 'golf academy'. Improvements to a nearby primary school were also on the cards, although the school wrote to Cornwall Council to point out they had not been consulted on the scheme.

Protestors have argued that it will seriously damage the town centre, with a report saying it could see 28 per cent of trade lost

St Austell town councillors failed to support the development at a close run vote in December.

Mercian Developments and Metric Properties had argued it would bring jobs, and keep money in the area that would otherwise be spent in nearby towns.