SHOP CLO­SURE STRUG­GLES

Stockport Times West - - YOUR VIEWS -

SINCE it was an­nounced last year that theCo-op planned to sell their larger stores to Asda to over­come prob­lems caused by fi­nan­cial mis­man­age­ment in the or­gan­i­sa­tion, have been wait­ing to hear what will hap­pen to the Ridgedale Cen­tre in Marple.

Last week a poster went up near the en­trance to the shop ad­vis­ing cus­tomers that the store would cease to trade as a Co- op on Fe­bru­ary 14.

As of yes­ter­day, there was no in­di­ca­tion what would hap­pen af­ter that date, so asked the duty manager and was told that the shop would then be closed for sev­eral weeks to ef­fect the changeover. The RidgedaleCen­tre is the main gro­cery store in Marple and, like many other lo­cals, it is where do most of my shop­ping for food and other ba­sics.

The near­est equiv­a­lent stores are Aldi in Of­fer­ton, Romi­ley and Hazel Grove, Sains­bury’s in Hazel Grove, and Mor­risons in Bred­bury. Th­ese are all some dis­tance away and none can be eas­ily reached by public trans­port.

While have ac­cess to a car and can travel to the shops, the el­derly, those with mo­bil­ity prob­lems and those with­out their own trans­port are go­ing to strug­gle to ob­tain the ba­sic ne­ces­si­ties if the main provider in the town is out of ac­tion for some con­sid­er­able time.

When the re­cent con­tro­versy raged about Asda’s pro­posal to build a su­per­mar­ket on the Marple Sixth Form Col­lege site, the com­pany were most anx­ious to play the card of com­mu­nity in­volve­ment in Marple.

The com­plete lack of in­for­ma­tion about the cur­rent sit­u­a­tion gives the lie to that.

Come on, Asda. If you want the cit­i­zens of Marple to pa­tron­ize your busi­ness, you need to treat us prop­erly.

Tell us what is go­ing on. When you take over, you will be the ma­jor provider of food­stuffs and other ba­sic needs in the town, and that places an obli­ga­tion on you not to cease trad­ing for any length of time. Ju­dith Wil­shaw Marple

IIIIa­long its roads and pave­ments fol­low­ing wet weather.

But now we have a new nat­u­ral won­der, which could per­haps at­tract hun­dreds of vis­i­tors to our small com­mu­nity and might of­fer a new source of rev­enue to the lo­cal author­ity, al­le­vi­at­ing the tax­pay­ers’ bur­den.

The ‘at­trac­tion’ in ques­tion is the lake that has ma­te­ri­alised in Hather­low Lane at the pub en­trance to the car park of the Grapes.

Now this is not some in­signif­i­cant pud­dle, but a mag­nif­i­cent in­land sea that con­fronts any­one brave enough to cross it with the risk of be­ing sucked down by the whirlpools lurk­ing be­neath its sur­face.

Ve­hi­cles en­ter­ing the car park have been left drift­ing, with oc­cu­pants res­cued by a lifeboat ac­quired by the land­lady.

In­deed, there have been ru­mours that some­thing akin to the Loch Ness mon­ster has been spot­ted in the depths.

Darts and crib­bage are no longer played. The lat­est sports are model boat sail­ing and fish­ing, which give way to ice skat­ing when the weather is suit­able.

Clearly both the coun­cil and the brew­ery see this as adding value to the com­mu­nity, since nu­mer­ous ap­peals for the prob­lem to be dealt with, have fallen on deaf ears.

If this con­tin­ues, Hather­low Lane will have to be deemed a wa­ter­way with ap­pro­pri­ate lifebelts avail­able and trained guards in at­ten­dance. Dean Yor­w­erth Carl­ton Place Hazel Grove would make a good MP, but if you want a lo­cal can­di­date, it is a choice be­tween Labour or Tory as both can­di­dates have lived in the con­stituency all their lives. Peter Black Ec­cles­bridge Road Marple like out­side their bub­ble. Well, do and I’d like to of­fer vot­ers that choice in May.

And I’m look­ing for­ward to de­bat­ing in public fo­rums with the other can­di­dates and their sup­port­ers. Could I urge all com­mu­nity groups and the Ex­press to or­gan­ise as many as pos­si­ble. Michael Tay­lor Labour Par­li­men­tary Can­di­date for Hazel Grove

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