Dismay over retail park plans

IN LAST week’s Observer you asked if readers were ‘excited by the proposals’ to build a new retail park.

I for one am dismayed at the thought of yet another out-of-town retail area which will, if successful, draw even more shoppers away from the town centre.

The developers promise an ‘innovative riverside park concept’ but make no mention of the loss of wildlife habitat or the increased traffic movements which will add to the already-long queues in Westhampnett Road.

You have only to look at Southampton to see what happens when retailers move away from an established high street to a new development.

West Quay is flourishing while the old shopping area is in decline.

Do we really want our main city centre to be nothing more than charity shops, Poundland, plus many niche shops and jewellers for the well-off?

Or do we want to keep the interesting mix of shops that we have at present?

If so, then we should not allow any more out-of-town developments.

If these ‘household names’ really want to come here, I’m sure they could find premises.

After all, the whole of the upper floor of the refurbished Butter Market appears to be empty, as do some of the shops in Sadler’s (sorry, Little London) Walk.

Stephanie Carn

Whyke Road, Chichester