Store’s threat to small shops

Part of the explanation for the pressure HMV is under is the growth in sales of CDs etc, in supermarkets.

If this is the case, then it would be difficult to see how the new Tesco’s in Scarborough will not further damage shopping in the town centre, since the new superstore will compete with many other retailers in the town.

This development, if it goes ahead, needs a response which supports local retailers and a way of encouraging new, independent stores to open up. Clearly this means that landlords as well as dealers have to respond, and I hope that property rentals will more accurately reflect the new realities on the high street. Nor should landlords, who try to maintain foolishly high rents, be given sympathetic treatment when their properties remain empty - we should look again at what they pay in business rates, and make sure they have incentives to rent their properties out rather than blighting the town.

Cllr Colin Challen

Labour member for Castle Ward

Scarborough Borough Council

St Sepulchre Street