My campaigning pays off on store

SO THE planning applications for both Tesco and Sainsbury’s have been delayed till the summer. I believe that this is due to our ongoing campaign against the proposed store on Dean Road. Our council say it is because of revised plans due to be submitted by Tesco, and that they are carrying out specialist retail studies about the impact on our town centre, in addition to the traffic issues. This would not have happened without the increased pressure being put on both our council and Tesco. I have been saying about these very same issues ever since the Design Brief was put together by our council back in 2009. It was all very obvious, which is why I have been campaigning all this time.

Let’s look at some facts - Tesco held a public consultation last year and did not listen to the people’s concerns. This was proved because when they came to another public consultation which was organised by the Urban Area Forum, which I sit on, the support group and the Urban Space Group, on February 16 at our library, came with exactly the same plans and information. Tesco were unable to answer many of the key questions that I raised along with a number of other people. The plans were out of date as they still showed the Dean Road roundabout. Even though they were wanting to change it to lights, they refused to mark this on the plans to make it clear. Tesco also told me on that date they had new plans waiting to be signed off and yet here we are over a month later and they still have not arrived.

Sainsbury’s on the other hand started consulting around two years ago. They listened to the public’s concern regards the play area and community hall, they went away amended their plans accordingly and submitted these in December last year and before Tesco submitted theirs. Sainsbury’s have received very few objections and a lot more in favour. This store will have no where near the traffic impact that Tesco will, does not need a road closing, and would provide online delivery services which at the moment only Tesco do.

Finally I note that Councillor Billing says he would prefer that this site meets some housing needs but he wants to see this developed. We all agree with this, and I certainly do as I live in the ward. However whatever happens the long term issue must be the priority as this is a prime site in a residential area. store of this size, causing major traffic problems, loss of businesses, shops etc, is most certainly not the best for the long term. If we have to wait a while to get the best for the area long term then this is what must be done.

Malcolm Short

Chairman of Scarborough Town Against Tesco Store and Candidate for

the Central Ward

Murchison Street