IN RESPONSE to Mr Ted Murdler’s letter last week, what a wonderful attempt at a beautifully-crafted
piece of spin! Sadly it misses some salient points.
Firstly despite an increased range, meat (as currently sold by Penfolds), toiletries (as currently sold by Stephens), papers and cards (as currently sold by the newsagents) etc, to assume fewer people will leave the estate for ‘top-up’ shopping is very likely highly optimistic, due to less-competitive prices in comparison to the larger superstore which is less than a mile away – and, as it happens, a very pleasant walk down Centurion Way.
Yes, the pub has gone but I would strongly disagree that the dynamic of the area has changed. Having maintained a close relationship with this community for almost 16 years I feel qualified to make that judgement.
With regards to the ‘restrictive’ covenants, they were put in place for a reason and they remain an important part of why this parade works. We don’t want them removed, why would any of us wish to have a negative impact on the others’ business?
Sadly if a slow seeping of trade was to occur, a lack of covenants may in turn lead to a less-productive and less-peaceful co-existence with a desperate search for any business.
This in turn would lead to a negative impact on all the shops on the parade (yes, eventually even Froggs, who let’s face it would not want to trade from a row of boarded-up shops). This truly would leave the Co-operative as the only option, therefore we will keep our covenants. Why would we wish to make your aggressive takeover any easier?
Yet again, as in the public meeting, you have ignored Parklands stores as of any importance or relevance to your argument or indeed to the Parade. As a long-time customer and now an employee, I can reliably inform you that we too attract people to the parade as should have been gauged by recent letters to the Observer.
The main point you miss however is that a large amount of the local community (and by that I don’t just mean our customers) don’t feel turning this site into another shop will be of a benefit to the local area and would in fact prefer it to be used as something that would not only benefit the community but help enhance it.