South Ham pensioner puts case for Tesco

Daily Echo: An artist's impression of the proposed store An artist's impression of the proposed store

A PENSIONER handed in more than 50 letters of support to a planning inquiry considering the case for a new Tesco supermarket in Basingstoke.

John Kearney, of Western Way, South Ham, Basingstoke, spoke in favour of Tesco’s plan for a new 63,000 sq ft store on the former Smiths Industries site, in Winchester Road.

He handed 53 letters of support to the inquiry at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s Civic Offices, some of which he said came from residents in the Brighton Hill area.

The 75-year-old said: “It takes a lot of mileage to get up to Chineham so they just love the idea that there would be a Tesco on their doorstep.

“Also, there’s an awful lot of worry about jobs here. I do not know of any supermarket that has closed (during the recession).”

As reported in last Thursday’s Gazette, the inquiry is being held after the borough council’s development control committee went against the advice of planning officers in refusing permission for the store in July last year.

The inquiry, which started last Tuesday, also heard from Jonathan Baldock, a retail planning consultant appointed by the borough council in November 2012.

He said the committee’s refusal was correct due to the significant adverse effect the Tesco Extra store would have on Chineham Shopping Centre, which contains a Tesco store, and the Brighton Hill District Centre, which contains an Asda store.

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Christopher Katkowski, representing Tesco, asked Mr Baldock if he really believed shops in Brighton Hill were dependent on a particular level of Asda’s turnover.

Mr Baldock replied: “Yes, I think you can interpret like that. If Asda loses 30 per cent of its trade for example, then you would expect the other shops to lose comparable levels of trade.”

Speaking for Asda at the inquiry, Mark Underwood, partner at Deloitte Real Estate, said it was highly unusual for the company to get involved in such a hearing.

He said: “They have taken this step because the impact (of a new Tesco) will be so significant on the store, and that of Brighton Hill District Centre.”

He said the centre was not glamorous, but was a “workaday centre which serves a vital purpose”.

He added that the proposed introduction of the Tesco store “could well push the centre over the edge”, describing the current condition of the centre as “fragile” and arguing that many people who shop in Asda then go on to use other shops in the centre.

Scott Marshall, a chartered civil engineer appointed by the borough council, criticised Tesco’s plans to redevelop the Brighton Hill Roundabout as part of a multi-million pound package linked to approval of the new store.

Tesco had planned to build a “throughabout” link, giving priority to A30 traffic, and replacing some of the roundabout’s subways with level crossings.

He said: “This proposal introduces a significant safety issue – the existing subway network has a very low accident rate, whereas the proposed (changes) increase the likelihood of a collision involving a pedestrian and a vehicle.”

The planning inquiry, which is taking place at the Civic Offices, in London Road, continues today and is due to finish at the end of the week.

Comments (10)

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5:41pm Tue 26 Feb 13

Dotty74 says...

As one of the employees who have lost Their jobs when one of chineham centres' shops close, I fear that many more will face the same fate if the new tesco supermarket gets the go ahead. It's ok for tesco to say they will create jobs and improve the roads, but what about the business they will take from elsewhere? They should spend money and improve the store they have already which is far behind others in the area.
As one of the employees who have lost Their jobs when one of chineham centres' shops close, I fear that many more will face the same fate if the new tesco supermarket gets the go ahead. It's ok for tesco to say they will create jobs and improve the roads, but what about the business they will take from elsewhere? They should spend money and improve the store they have already which is far behind others in the area. Dotty74

10:50pm Tue 26 Feb 13

jools2013 says...

It would be madness to allow Tesco to open a superstore in the Smith's Industries site. There is no guarantee that Tesco would keep both that and the Chineham store open and you won't find any guarantees in their planning application, What would happen to the extra jobs then?
I've lived in Brighton Hill since 2000 and I haven't met anyone yet who wants a Tesco superstore here. I remember Brighton Parade before Asda committed to the area and regenerated it. It was a scruffy, run down muddle of buildings that attracted teenagers and not a lot else. That could happen to Chineham Centre if Tesco "rationalises" it's business once it has a bright shiny new store in Brighton Hill. The last time I was in Chineham I thought it was looking a bit dated, imagine what would happen to it if Tesco leaves?
We have to look further than the possibility of having a Tesco within walking distance, we need to consider the impact on Basingstoke as a whole. What good is a new superstore if we are later limited to "take it or leave it" once the shops in Brighton Parade have closed. Think of the traffic problems. Isn't Brighton Hill roundabout and Winchester Road bad enough as it is? What about people who will be living opposite Tesco? Not much fun for them with Tesco delivery vans arriving every few minutes to keep a superstore stocked up.
When Sainsbury opened in Kempshot they kept Festival Place open and both stores survive, but you can't draw any comparisons with Tesco as the two Sainsbury customer bases are completely different. With Tesco the Chineham store and Brighton Hill one would be competing for the same customers. Please don't be naive enough to think both would be safe.
I fear that, with the current government, the carefully considered decisions of our Basingstoke planners may be overruled, but it would be a terrible mistake. All so Tesco can increase their profits at the cost of local shops and local people.
It would be madness to allow Tesco to open a superstore in the Smith's Industries site. There is no guarantee that Tesco would keep both that and the Chineham store open and you won't find any guarantees in their planning application, What would happen to the extra jobs then? I've lived in Brighton Hill since 2000 and I haven't met anyone yet who wants a Tesco superstore here. I remember Brighton Parade before Asda committed to the area and regenerated it. It was a scruffy, run down muddle of buildings that attracted teenagers and not a lot else. That could happen to Chineham Centre if Tesco "rationalises" it's business once it has a bright shiny new store in Brighton Hill. The last time I was in Chineham I thought it was looking a bit dated, imagine what would happen to it if Tesco leaves? We have to look further than the possibility of having a Tesco within walking distance, we need to consider the impact on Basingstoke as a whole. What good is a new superstore if we are later limited to "take it or leave it" once the shops in Brighton Parade have closed. Think of the traffic problems. Isn't Brighton Hill roundabout and Winchester Road bad enough as it is? What about people who will be living opposite Tesco? Not much fun for them with Tesco delivery vans arriving every few minutes to keep a superstore stocked up. When Sainsbury opened in Kempshot they kept Festival Place open and both stores survive, but you can't draw any comparisons with Tesco as the two Sainsbury customer bases are completely different. With Tesco the Chineham store and Brighton Hill one would be competing for the same customers. Please don't be naive enough to think both would be safe. I fear that, with the current government, the carefully considered decisions of our Basingstoke planners may be overruled, but it would be a terrible mistake. All so Tesco can increase their profits at the cost of local shops and local people. jools2013

8:18am Wed 27 Feb 13

JJ38JJ says...

The two ongoing stories likely to provoke debate on this site are the numbers of houses that are planned to be built and the opening of another supermarket in a town that already has four of comparable size.
For me the stories go hand in hand. Tesco are not stupid - far from it. They are supplying a future demand. It's not a case of replacing the Tesco store in Chineham but grabbing new business from the new residents before their rivals do.
How many people I wonder currently travel from Beggarwood or Hatchwarren to the Chineham Tesco's for their weekly shopping? An insignificant amount.
The two ongoing stories likely to provoke debate on this site are the numbers of houses that are planned to be built and the opening of another supermarket in a town that already has four of comparable size. For me the stories go hand in hand. Tesco are not stupid - far from it. They are supplying a future demand. It's not a case of replacing the Tesco store in Chineham but grabbing new business from the new residents before their rivals do. How many people I wonder currently travel from Beggarwood or Hatchwarren to the Chineham Tesco's for their weekly shopping? An insignificant amount. JJ38JJ

10:48am Wed 27 Feb 13

JacquesMeahof says...

Surely Beggarwood residents have their groceries delivered by Ocado, don't they?
Surely Beggarwood residents have their groceries delivered by Ocado, don't they? JacquesMeahof

9:05am Thu 28 Feb 13

stevenm353 says...

Another supermarket only 53 signatures in favour,the Tesco in chineham to far away there's a Morrison,Asda and Lidl near by and local shops they all cater for our needs say NO to Tesco your not needed here.
Another supermarket only 53 signatures in favour,the Tesco in chineham to far away there's a Morrison,Asda and Lidl near by and local shops they all cater for our needs say NO to Tesco your not needed here. stevenm353

2:00pm Thu 28 Feb 13

Pacifier says...

Good luck to these petitioners..we need a Tesco here and HCC have failed miserably in sorting out Brighton Hill roundabout...If Asda cant stand the competition perhaps they should improve their service levels which at the meoment stink...Good luck to Tesco hope you win against this silly refusal!!!
Good luck to these petitioners..we need a Tesco here and HCC have failed miserably in sorting out Brighton Hill roundabout...If Asda cant stand the competition perhaps they should improve their service levels which at the meoment stink...Good luck to Tesco hope you win against this silly refusal!!! Pacifier

4:01pm Thu 28 Feb 13

robertspet8 says...

YouGovBrandIndex shows that the top four supermarkets for the last two year as judged by consumers are, in descending order: M&S; Sainsbury's; Waitrose; and Morrisons. Tesco has been demoted from 5th to 7th.
So what we consumers really want is a Waitrose or, at a push, another M&S. But not a Tesco.
YouGovBrandIndex shows that the top four supermarkets for the last two year as judged by consumers are, in descending order: M&S; Sainsbury's; Waitrose; and Morrisons. Tesco has been demoted from 5th to 7th. So what we consumers really want is a Waitrose or, at a push, another M&S. But not a Tesco. robertspet8

7:58am Fri 1 Mar 13

stevenm353 says...

there may be problems but another supermarket is not the answer what is needed are smaller independant shops not TESCO
there may be problems but another supermarket is not the answer what is needed are smaller independant shops not TESCO stevenm353

1:40am Mon 4 Mar 13

BugBear says...

What we really need is a comedy store.
What we really need is a comedy store. BugBear

1:56pm Mon 11 Mar 13

myaimistrue says...

Silly refusal says Pacifier.

Obviously has no idea what Tesco are offering.
Silly refusal says Pacifier. Obviously has no idea what Tesco are offering. myaimistrue

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