Abandon all Hope – another fucking Tesco

 August 25, 2009         1 Comment

You know, Tesco isn’t all bad. Well, OK it is – but a new Tesco store isn’t the end of the world.

 However, a new Tesco store on Hope Street – slap bang in the middle of the ‘cultural quarter’, connecting two astonishing cathedrals, host to the iconic Philharmonic Hall, Everyman Theatre and Philharmonic pub and blessed with its own street festival – is a bloody awful prospect.

Announced at a time when the city council has somehow, disgracefully, allowed a developer to destroy Josephine Butler House with the promise of a car park, the prospect of another sodding Tesco store blighting the otherwise-charming thoroughfare is a depressing one.

Tesco in Liverpool

I think there’s an important caveat to this discussion though. Tesco isn’t ‘evil’, as Liberal Democrat Berni Turner says, and I don’t think such contributions are helpful.

There’s certainly questions to be asked in terms of Tesco’s attitudes towards its suppliers and, like any megalithic international organisation I’m sure there are question marks over its social and environmental records.

But this debate should focus purely and squarely on the prospect of one of its gaudy stores, and accompanying footfall and congestion, destroying the character of one of the city’s more pleasant and historic streets.

In that context I don’t know why this is even being debated – is there anyone in the entire city who would vote for such a blot on the landscape? And what of the colossal over-supply and impact on other retailers in the area?

For the record Tesco wants to build one of its Express outlets in the building that was formerly Roadkill, just along for the Philharmonic pub. It would be, by my reckoning, the ninth in the city centre alone after the new Old Hall Street store opened recently.

Normally residents associations would step in and tell Tesco where to shove it, but I fear the transitory nature of the residents – including plenty of students – is likely to mean a lack of dedicated opposition in the area.

And I don’t see how the council has the power to stop the store opening, as it falls within the proscribed use of the building. At best there can be some horse trading over what the store looks like.

Maybe some form of protest may give cause to Sir Terry Leahy – son of Liverpool, Tesco head honcho and Liverpool Vision board member – cause to step in.

It’s the only way I think we can avoid the prospect of yet another fucking Tesco opening up in the city centre.

• Join the Facebook group

• Image by Sam the Sham via Creative Commons

Comments

  1. Sunderland, Harrogate, Wolverhampton – lots of towns are immune to the charms of Tesco (at least in the numbers we’ve been blessed with). It can be done, but it takes a competition commission with far bigger balls to really tackle the problem when they’ve already arrived. I notice the Somerfield at the Top of Lord Street’s mutated into another one, too. It’s worse than Swine Flu.

Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Your email address will not be published.