Residents have their say on Tesco Express plans at public meeting

PACKED MEETING: About 150 residents attended the debate at Areley Kings Village Hall on Monday.

PROVIDING ANSWERS: Labour councillor Jamie Shaw and Tesco corporate affairs manager Simon Petar take questions from the 150-strong audience.

First published in Local
Last updated
Kidderminster Shuttle: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

SUPERMARKET giant Tesco has come under fire from residents of Areley Kings in a heated debate over plans to open a convenience store in the village.

About 150 people packed Areley Kings Village Hall on Monday to discuss plans to turn the Squirrel pub, Areley Common, into a Tesco Express. It followed a preliminary meeting of residents last Thursday, which saw 100 people fill Areley Kings Methodist Church.

The application’s fate will be sealed in public by councillors on Wyre Forest District Council’s planning committee, possibly next month.

Plans have drawn a mixed reaction since being revealed but residents attending both meetings were overwhelmingly opposed, with major concerns including road safety and deliveries, as well as fears nearby businesses, including Taylor’s Newsagent, the pharmacy and Londis Pantry Stores, could be lost, along with jobs.

Monday’s meeting saw Labour councillor Jamie Shaw, resident Rob Fowler, Tesco corporate affairs manager Simon Petar and planning consultant Rhian Lees face the passionate audience.

Mr Petar said if the store went ahead there would be three deliveries a day and 20 jobs created, although Mr Fowler argued 25 could be lost from other businesses. The site would include 16 car parking spaces and deliveries would take place behind the store.

The majority of objections raised centred around transport fears, including delivery times and size of lorries causing disturbances, pedestrian and child safety and cars being parked on the road instead of the car park.

All audience members raised their hands when asked who would not shop at Tesco Express, with Mr Petar saying the company would open the store at its “own commercial risk”.

Neighbouring residents vented anger at the possibility of noise and light pollution with one, Debbie Carr, telling The Shuttle her house shook when heavy vehicles drove past.

Mr Petar, who was heckled throughout the meeting, said deliveries would not take place between 7am and 9am and 4pm and 6pm and further restrictions could be placed by the council. He said many residents had contacted him to say they wanted to see more choice in the village.

The meeting also discussed ways villagers could object through the planning process and suggested setting up a community group to register the Squirrel as an “asset of community value”, which could give residents a chance to bid for the site.

Summing up, Mr Petar said: “I will be reporting back what has been said tonight and make sure any application is legal and takes into account concerns, particularly around traffic.”

Mr Fowler said: “I do not think Tesco are left in any doubt as to the strength of feeling here. We now have the opportunity to do something, not just go away and grumble.”

Comments (12)

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11:22am Wed 19 Mar 14

nevets says...

At the end of the day Tesco's will get thier way like they always do.
As Mr Petar said "The company would open the store at its own risk",A few Hundred or so people means nothing to them. And as for the Councillors of Wyre Forest District Council Planning Committee,don't expect them to do the local residents any favours.
At the end of the day Tesco's will get thier way like they always do. As Mr Petar said "The company would open the store at its own risk",A few Hundred or so people means nothing to them. And as for the Councillors of Wyre Forest District Council Planning Committee,don't expect them to do the local residents any favours. nevets
  • Score: 15

12:18pm Wed 19 Mar 14

Skijumper says...

Such a shame had the local pub been as well patronised as this meeting, then perhaps this Tesco issue would never had arisen.
Such a shame had the local pub been as well patronised as this meeting, then perhaps this Tesco issue would never had arisen. Skijumper
  • Score: 4

12:49pm Wed 19 Mar 14

Shibdrift says...

"This is a local village, for local people"
;o)
"This is a local village, for local people" ;o) Shibdrift
  • Score: 4

1:30pm Wed 19 Mar 14

Bcfc1186 says...

"We NEED a pub!!"...... said 200 people who never set foot in The Squirrel.
"We NEED a pub!!"...... said 200 people who never set foot in The Squirrel. Bcfc1186
  • Score: 10

4:02pm Wed 19 Mar 14

1downsie says...

I bet the majority of the people who attended the meeting will also use the new Tesco once it is opened.
I bet the majority of the people who attended the meeting will also use the new Tesco once it is opened. 1downsie
  • Score: 4

9:46pm Wed 19 Mar 14

vassenden says...

At least the people are fighting for something and not sitting down and letting it happen. keep fighting. Tesco are not interested in the local people, they see money from possible new housing developments.
The remarks though about the Squirrel not being used are probably correct, so start using it or you will lose it.
At least the people are fighting for something and not sitting down and letting it happen. keep fighting. Tesco are not interested in the local people, they see money from possible new housing developments. The remarks though about the Squirrel not being used are probably correct, so start using it or you will lose it. vassenden
  • Score: 5

10:33pm Wed 19 Mar 14

Skijumper says...

"At least the people are fighting for something and not sitting down and letting it happen. keep fighting".
Tut! tut! an example of shutting the door after the horse has bolted.Certainly well on the back foot and 2 laps behind already by doing nothing in the first instance by not patronising the local pub.
Sorry you only reap what you sow.
"At least the people are fighting for something and not sitting down and letting it happen. keep fighting". Tut! tut! an example of shutting the door after the horse has bolted.Certainly well on the back foot and 2 laps behind already by doing nothing in the first instance by not patronising the local pub. Sorry you only reap what you sow. Skijumper
  • Score: 1

4:22pm Thu 20 Mar 14

gypsyman1 says...

how mutch does evryone want to bet that when tescoes does open most of the people who are moaning will still shop there as its going to be mor convenient than going into town, now whoever says they wont go into it IS A LIER, i will be in it evry day surporting it and so will about 2 or 300 walshes residents as it will be a lot cheaper than rotten londis and tesco wont rip us off, its funny how its only realy a handfull of people who are realy moaning, all the people i have spoken to and thers a lot, all say it will be good for the local area, all this is about is older people dont like chang so they want to spoil it for the next generation, (NOT SLAGGING OLD PEOPLE OFF) but time change just deal with it. GET READY FOR ALL THE COWADLEY THUMBS DOWN
how mutch does evryone want to bet that when tescoes does open most of the people who are moaning will still shop there as its going to be mor convenient than going into town, now whoever says they wont go into it IS A LIER, i will be in it evry day surporting it and so will about 2 or 300 walshes residents as it will be a lot cheaper than rotten londis and tesco wont rip us off, its funny how its only realy a handfull of people who are realy moaning, all the people i have spoken to and thers a lot, all say it will be good for the local area, all this is about is older people dont like chang so they want to spoil it for the next generation, (NOT SLAGGING OLD PEOPLE OFF) but time change just deal with it. GET READY FOR ALL THE COWADLEY THUMBS DOWN gypsyman1
  • Score: -4

8:00am Sat 22 Mar 14

Skijumper says...

"What goes around comes around" or "as you sow, so shall you reap" is the basic understanding of how karma, the law of cause and effect, works.
My opinion: The pub closed down because it sold less alcohol etc owing to the local convenience store attracting the deserting pub's customers by undercutting prices. So now the customer base given the opportunity, will once again desert no doubt one convenience store, for another one that undercuts prices etc. Hence, "What goes around comes around". It’s not rocket science is it?
"What goes around comes around" or "as you sow, so shall you reap" is the basic understanding of how karma, the law of cause and effect, works. My opinion: The pub closed down because it sold less alcohol etc owing to the local convenience store attracting the deserting pub's customers by undercutting prices. So now the customer base given the opportunity, will once again desert no doubt one convenience store, for another one that undercuts prices etc. Hence, "What goes around comes around". It’s not rocket science is it? Skijumper
  • Score: 3

5:36pm Sat 22 Mar 14

John Herbert Smith says...

Here we go again:

IF YOU DON'T WANT THE TESCO'S, DON'T SHOP THERE. IT WILL THEN CLOSE DOWN.

BUT OF COURSE, THAT WON'T HAPPEN WILL IT?
Here we go again: IF YOU DON'T WANT THE TESCO'S, DON'T SHOP THERE. IT WILL THEN CLOSE DOWN. BUT OF COURSE, THAT WON'T HAPPEN WILL IT? John Herbert Smith
  • Score: -2

1:30pm Sun 23 Mar 14

Redsterfootball says...

Firstly the people saying about keeping the pub, did you ever set feet in it? Awful place, maybe if Punch Taverns had invested a little bit of time, effort and money into it then it may well have had people using it.

If, as someone has suggested, that the main people who wish to use the Tesco are from the Walshes estate the most simple suggestion would be build it on there instead. Surely it can be built on the Queens Road area then everybody is happy. Residents of Areley Common, Areley Kings and Astley Cross don't want it the Walshes residents do, so off you pop Tesco go where you're actually wanted.
Firstly the people saying about keeping the pub, did you ever set feet in it? Awful place, maybe if Punch Taverns had invested a little bit of time, effort and money into it then it may well have had people using it. If, as someone has suggested, that the main people who wish to use the Tesco are from the Walshes estate the most simple suggestion would be build it on there instead. Surely it can be built on the Queens Road area then everybody is happy. Residents of Areley Common, Areley Kings and Astley Cross don't want it the Walshes residents do, so off you pop Tesco go where you're actually wanted. Redsterfootball
  • Score: 0

2:05pm Sun 23 Mar 14

Skijumper says...

Redsterfootball wrote:
Firstly the people saying about keeping the pub, did you ever set feet in it? Awful place, maybe if Punch Taverns had invested a little bit of time, effort and money into it then it may well have had people using it.

If, as someone has suggested, that the main people who wish to use the Tesco are from the Walshes estate the most simple suggestion would be build it on there instead. Surely it can be built on the Queens Road area then everybody is happy. Residents of Areley Common, Areley Kings and Astley Cross don't want it the Walshes residents do, so off you pop Tesco go where you're actually wanted.
No doubt Tesco will have surveyed the area thoroughly and without any question, logistically, accessibility, etc it's the chosen prime site in all aspects to their calculations. At the end of the day the objectors have two choices, either buy the pub or boycott Tesco should they be successful.
[quote][p][bold]Redsterfootball[/bold] wrote: Firstly the people saying about keeping the pub, did you ever set feet in it? Awful place, maybe if Punch Taverns had invested a little bit of time, effort and money into it then it may well have had people using it. If, as someone has suggested, that the main people who wish to use the Tesco are from the Walshes estate the most simple suggestion would be build it on there instead. Surely it can be built on the Queens Road area then everybody is happy. Residents of Areley Common, Areley Kings and Astley Cross don't want it the Walshes residents do, so off you pop Tesco go where you're actually wanted.[/p][/quote]No doubt Tesco will have surveyed the area thoroughly and without any question, logistically, accessibility, etc it's the chosen prime site in all aspects to their calculations. At the end of the day the objectors have two choices, either buy the pub or boycott Tesco should they be successful. Skijumper
  • Score: 3

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