Sainsbury’s will be ‘death knell’ for shops, says Craig

Craig Whittaker MP
Craig Whittaker MP

CALDER Valley MP Craig Whittaker has written a letter to the Planning Inspectorate objecting to a Sainsbury’s supermarket in Todmorden.

Ahead of the public inquiry into the matter, which will be held in July, Mr Whittaker has said a further supermarket in the town will “sound the death knell” for many local businesses.

He disagrees with Sainsbury’s view that customers will walk into the town centre to other shops and the market.

“There were over 4,000 people from a population of 11,000 in Todmorden who signed the ‘SORTIT’ campaign to stop the proposals,” he said.

“Sainsbury’s are clearly trying to rush this through before local people have the opportunity to develop their community plan, which will be the foundation for planning at local level as per the Government’s Localism agenda.

“Clearly Sainsbury’s are running scared and want to ride roughshod over local feelings.

“If they really were community focused like their company PR machine would have us believe, then why are they ignoring the wishes of 4,000 local people?”

Mr Whittaker has also written to Mary Portas, who is heading up the Government’s high street review, asking if she will raise an objection with the Planning Inspectorate.

l Todmorden Town Council has sent in a letter of objection.

Councillors have reiterated their concerns including over-intensification of supermarkets in the town and potential harm to the lively small retail sector and Todmorden’s market town identity.