Look to Hebden for small shops model

THE majority of people who objected to Sainsbury’s were right - we don’t want another supermarket in Todmorden.

Agreed, it is a prime site and in the right location, one for access to public transport, two safe accesses in and out, three local shops and the market.

Put Sainsbury’s on this site and it won’t be long before Morrison’s closes. If it’s right as reported in the local paper there may be problems with the entrance if the wall is going to be raised even more. On coming out it will be impossible to see traffic coming down Rochdale Road.

The entrance to this supermarket should have been across from the old fire station and the supermarket where the car park is.

Local shops, what’s left of them, will slowly disappear. Some think another supermarket won’t harm them or the market. Probably not.

We know the town badly needs employment but looking long term at this town we have, with its sweeping hills, tree-lined roads in and out and one of the best parks in Calderdale, we need to promote the town as a tourist attraction and now is the time to build a marina on the site.

Years ago, as Mr Sunderland (letters, August 18) said, it was suggested but then was not the right time as the Rochdale Canal had not been fully opened up and there was a possibility it might not. But now it has and a possibility could become a reality.

And it need not cost rate-payers a penny. I am sure grants could be obtained, lottery funding could be applied for and for the hotel a private vendor could be approached. I believe this project could provide as much employment for the town as a supermarket.

Due to the economics at this moment in time, more and more members of the public are making use of boating holidays and caravanning holidays because it is cheaper than going abroad.

Long term, if Sainsbury’s appeal due to government planning changes, they will most probably be granted permission. Then it won’t be long before we are fighting off a supermarket for the Rose Street site. Well, there’s only one left - Tesco. If they get in then goodbye shops by market. Then we will be known as a supermarket town.

Hebden Bridge won’t let another supermarket in and look at them, it thrives. They open up early and close at tea-time and I may add they don’t have Bank Holidays off, they stay open. Every Bank Holiday it is packed with people. Todmorden could be like that but it is not.

I did not attend the meeting where Mr Sunderland spoke, but I have known this gentleman all my life and know he would not intentionally be disrespectful to anyone in this manner. But I must agree with him on one point - not all but some market traders seem to set up around 10am then start going around 3pm and these are the ones who are harming the market. They need to go back to the days when Mr Boocock the greengrocer had his stall on there, open at 7am, close at 5pm.

Supermarkets have to be stopped from coming to small towns like Todmorden in volume. Long term when they are all here there will no no shops and market. All that will be left will be unsightly empty buildings and food prices in supermarkets will go sky high because they will be the only ones left and no-one to stop them charging what they want.

As for Rose Street, Primark are trying to get into Halifax. If it was offered to them they would probably snap it up and if it could be built with free underground car parking it would bring employment to the town and not harm the shops or market.

This is a better option than a landscaped piece of land that in time will be just another eyesore or be less costly to maintain.

Mr R. Young, Derdale Street, Todmorden.