On Sunday 27th June, I had a chance to witness England's great sporting triumph of that day. Those of you looking back at the calendar may be puzzled – surely that was the day we were thrashed by Germany in Bloemfontein, hardly a triumph. True, but I was referring to our cricket team taking an unassailable 3 -0 lead over the Aussies at Old Trafford, a mere 2 miles from my home, and a match to which I might have gone.
So why didn't I? Because, Lancashire County Cricket Club have hitched their ground improvement to Tesco, who plan to put what is arguably Britain's biggest hypermarket close to the ground, with the redevelopment money as a bribe to Trafford Council and the Cricket Club. I've blogged at length on this before - Just Not Cricket so will just focus now on more recent events in this sorry saga.
Tesco's application was approved by Trafford Council, but a strong campaign from No Mega Tesco called for the Government of the North-West to have it called in. A particular argument for call-in was a rival supermarket plan for Sainsbury's at White City little more than a stone's throw away, and on a site where such a store was already permitted. The Government of the North-West deferred their decision until after the election; several weeks after the result, with the Tory – Lib Dem coalition in power, and cuts very much on the agenda, the Government let it go. As the cricket club celebrate the many campaigners have only a possible appeal from Derwent Holdings (who are behind the rival Sainsbury's) bid to hold on to.
To add insult to injury Tesco are apparently planning a further supermarket in Chorlton, to add to the one they forced through against local opinion a few years back. Unfortunately as they are taking over a disused pub, they don't need planning permission, so we can expect it imminently.
Battles against Tesco rumble on continually across the country, indeed there is a well-known national campaign group concerned with this one topic – Tescopoly. Former Green Party principal speaker Derek Wall has the honour of being banned for life from Tesco, following an earlier act of opposition.
Elsewhere in the country right now, the Norfolk town of Sheringham is trying to hold out against the juggernaut, with evidence of dirty tricks from the Supermarket giant - as reported in the Independent recently -
Meanwhile in Brighton, Green councillors and even a Green MP don't necessarily tip the odds enough, - see here for information on their fight to save a Community Garden from the Tesco onslaught:- Lewes Road Tesco
Tesco already control over 30% of the UK grocery trade; in the wake of these developemnts we can the loss of more local shops across South Manchester and Trafford, and more money siphoned out of the area, to the pockets of Tesco shareholders