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Hundreds join anti-Sandbanks Tesco campaign
9:01am Friday 5th October 2012 in News
OPPOSITION to Tesco taking over the site of the Sandacres pub in Sandbanks is growing, with two petitions and an online campaign now under way.
Since Saturday, Sandbanks Stores in Banks Road has collected more than 450 signatures against the opening of a Tesco Express on the peninsula – despite the fact that the supermarket giant has acquired the lease and does not need planning permission for the new store.
Karen Denham, the shop’s owner, said: “We’ve had lots and lots of support. Nobody I’ve spoken to wants another Tesco – there’s one at Lilliput and one at Branksome. It will be a blot on the landscape.”
She warned: “It will kill off small businesses.
“There isn’t a big footfall in the winter and we all struggle to make a living. A boycott would be really good.
“ The people of Sandbanks and the surrounding area don’t want any sort of supermarket.
“It’s a quaint, old-fashioned type of seaside resort.”
Gary Willingham has started a Save Sandacres Pub online petition, and estate agent Sean Murphy’s Facebook campaign against the takeover has attracted hundreds of supporters.
But Melanie Chiswell, community liaison manager for Tesco, said: “In our experience people welcome Tesco Express stores because they are convenient.
“They offer a shop people can walk to, provide jobs and also regenerate buildings that are no longer in use.
“I believe there are many in the area that will support and use it. I have spoken to people on the phone who are pleased that we’re coming.
“We’ve had inquiries about jobs already.
“We’ve never experienced a boycott – our stores are popular when they are opened.”
Ms Chiswell said most Tesco Express customers came from within a one kilometre radius of the store and walked there.
Each store had a distribution plan to ensure they could be restocked safely.
“Lorries will be of a size that’s appropriate for the site and we will be mindful of neighbours when we carry out deliveries,” she promised.