Monday, 11 August 2008

Tesco coming to town

Two years after we stopped them opening a massive hypermarket at Feethams, and a year after they were refused permission to open a store on North Road, Tesco look like they've have finally made it into Darlington.
They have applied for permission to convert units on the ground floor of the Cornmill Centre into a Tesco Express. A lease agreement has been reached with the owners of the Cornmill.
Opening onto Tubwell Row, less than 100 metres from the Indoor Market, the new store, even with a slimmed down range appropriate to its size, will be severe competition for the market and other food shops in town.
It certainly casts doubt on outline plans for a food store on the Feethams site, the consultation process for which is just coming to an end. With Tesco in the Cornmill, who would open a store at Feethams?


Anonymous said...

I can see both sides to this argument - but with my food bills being nearly £15 more a week, unfortunately price is now overcoming the desire to want to put into my local markets. Its a shame, but it is the truth.

miketually said...

Anonymous, your local markets are probably cheaper than the supermarkets. Supermarkets aren't as cheap as they seem...

A store with an off-license for alcohol in the Cornmill, selling cheap alcohol, could lead to some interesting situations.

Mike Barker said...

Once established, that is generally true, Mike. However, Tesco have a reputation for selling below cost when they open a new store: pitching their prices at an appropriate level to undercut local retailers.
Once they have established themselves and maybe seen off some of the competition, prices start to creep up. By that time, it could be too late for some retailers.

Chris Close said...

But where is the political will to defend local communities and local businesses?

I agree with Mike, this could well be a false economy as posted by Anonymous.

I try to shop locally as much as I can because that is a) the only way to maintain choice and b) as Mike Barker says this will be a short term gain until there is no real opposition/choice left.

Chris Close