Is Tesco after world domination?

SIR – If Tesco eventually opens up a superstore, you can kiss goodbye to WGC and everything good about it. Warren Harris, Via email. SIR – Tesco is determined to build a new store on the Broadwater Road, WGC, site despite local opposition. I suspect

SIR - If Tesco eventually opens up a superstore, you can kiss goodbye to WGC and everything good about it.

Warren Harris,

Via email.

SIR - Tesco is determined to build a new store on the Broadwater Road, WGC, site despite local opposition.


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I suspect that over the next few years they will continue to appeal any 'refusal', possibly eventually securing the site for a huge new store.

Even a medium-sized store here would cripple WGC town centre, as has happened in Hatfield when one supermarket dominates the retail offer.

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Our town centre already has Sainsbury's and Waitrose and does not need a further store taking away business from an already fragile market place.

Tesco already has a huge 24-hour store selling everything, no more than a five minute drive away; what are they looking for, world domination?

Wake up to what is happening nationally.

Our representatives in the borough council must be determined not to give in to Tesco which would dominate this side of the railway track.

Workers who would normally shop in the town would simply stop going to shop or eat lunch, making our town centre even less viable.

How many more charity shops do we need in the town, because that is what you will get if this goes through.

By all means develop the site, but as a first class leisure venue, not yet another grocery store.

John Harper,

Operations support manager,

YMCA, Peartree Lane, WGC.

SIR - I read the article in the Welwyn & Hatfield Times on the proposed Tesco development on the Broadwater Road estate and am writing to let you know my views.

I first came to live in WGC with my parents when I was four.

My father moved down from Cheshire with ICI.

I lived there up to the age of 19 when my parents moved to Welwyn village and I went to university.

After graduating and spending three years living in Surrey, I returned to Hertfordshire (Welwyn) and now live in Datchworth.

I come into WGC often during the week and am always impressed with how the town has kept its character over the years.

With Sainsbury's soon extending its supermarket facilities and I notice Waitrose doing the same I do not want Tesco to build a retail outlet in the town; particularly since it has one of the largest outlets in Hatfield not far from Stanborough.

However, I have no objection to it developing the site as a part of the development of the town.

If a development goes ahead, Tesco should understand some of the history of the town and what it stands for.

In particular the style should be modern, but in keeping with the older parts.

Also, it should be in keeping with the original Quaker tradition, no nightclubs or drinking establishments should be allowed. The new licensed restaurants in the town have been a great success and this type of establishment should be encouraged.

Another concern is that care should be taken that the new development does not draw all the trade out of the existing town (and the Howard Centre) leaving behind a ghost town.

There should be commitments from new retailers before the development is given the go ahead.

I think that WGC has a great future, but it would be a shame if a company like Tesco was allowed to use its financial muscle to force the local authorities into a scheme that destroyed the parochial character of the town.

The council should bear in mind Tesco's unpopular and disastrous development in Gerard's Cross that collapsed onto the railway. The development is out of proportion to the town and still unpopular with residents but Tesco refuses to cancel the development.

Andrew Simpson,

Meadow Close,

Datchworth.

SIR - The draft details for redeveloping the former Shredded Wheat site look exciting and imaginative.

To include 1,200/1,500 dwellings from the housing total now required for the borough, is in itself a good step forward and helps look after the Green Belt around the town.

The overall scheme, to include a swimming pool and new shopping all linked with a pedestrian walkway bridge to the centre shops, is good planning.

If approval is given for an overall development of this type, the consent should have conditions in it to safeguard the phasing of construction.This should not allow a new Tesco store to be completed and in use before other amenities are available.

The outline details have not included the use of the existing grain silos which are a long-standing symbol of WGC and are an important feature to the overall design of the site.

John Sketcher, retired planner, Knightsfield,WGC.

SIR - How famous we once again will be.

Once we were famous as visionaries of the future, offering a better way of life for the entire community.

Now, should the Tesco development be allowed to be built as it has been submitted, we will be the only town in the UK that has two competing town centres almost, but critically not quite, joined.

Only time will tell as to which of the competing centres will survive, but there is insufficient trade in our catchment area for both to make it as commercial successes.

Place your bets bets now folks and welcome to Town Farce 2008.

Paul Marr,

Little Ley, WGC.

SIR - I agee the draft ideas of Tesco Towers would be a great advantage for WGC with the exception of 30,000 square metres of new offices. Don't you think there is too much empty office space already around WGC - a lot that has been empty for years!?

A welcome alternative would be something along the lines of a youth centre where teenagers can participate in various activities or work experience, rather than being left to their own devices on our streets. They need somewhere to go in the evenings and have some interests out of school/college.

I think the housing provision should include provision for our grown-up children who have lived here in WGC for 24-plus years and want to set up home themselves with partners without having to give up all their salaries trying to get mortgages or pay the high rents in the area.

They shouldn't have to be key workers here either, it should go on the length of time you have lived here in the area.

James Johnson,

Beauchamps, WGC.

SIR - The Broadwater Road scheme does seem to incorporate all the suggestions, but will it just be another Hatfield Town Centre fiasco?

As Tesco owns the land I should think the building of a store will happen, but the rest will just lie in limbo.

Mrs M Cowie, WGC.

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