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Sainsbury's and Tesco's

From Veronica Roberts

Friday, 6 December 2013

In the post this morning,just had notification that sainsbury's are to submit plans for a local store on the site of the former fire station, Valley Rd. This town will soon be known as the little town with the most supermarkets...

From Dave R

Friday, 6 December 2013

Great news. Get a Booths at Mytholm and a Sainsburys (small store) central, shop local for my meat, fruit, veg and bread and we can hopefully buy all we need in Hebden Bridge.

Hope they get planning permission and remove yet another eyesore from our town.

From Xander R

Friday, 6 December 2013

One Stop Stores Ltd is a subsidury of Tescos and has taken over Spar shops.

Basically Tescos are here opening next Thursday 12th December.
There is a facebook group 'Every Little Helps- Get Tesco Out Of Hebden Bridge' has got 170 members in a few days.

Sainsburys now applying to have shop in Valley Road.

And another supermarket may be built in Mythom, planning application approved this week.

By next year Hebden could have 4 supermarkets and Oasis if it survives.

From Helen Taylor

Saturday, 7 December 2013

Oh no! I am incredibly dismayed to learn that the planning application for a supermarket on the Mytholm site has just been approved, AND that Sainsbury's are about to apply for fairly sizeable Sainsbury's local (270sqm shop space is not small) on Valley Road, AND that there will be a Tesco opening on Crown Street in a few days' time!

Tesco are already showing themselves to be devious by not using their own name, but going under One-Stop when they take the place of Spar on Crown Street. They are usually proud to shout about their new Tesco Metros. They are known for moving in and under-cutting local shops. They presumably won't be getting their milk from Luddenden Foot like Stephen Maskill, and SK News on St Georges Square. Will they stock the delicious onion bhajis and curries made in Halifax stocked by the Oasis franchise holder? Presumably they will stock their own make. What other local food manufacturers will Tesco/One-Stop not stock, but stock their own brand? Tesco are known for underpricing on key products to put competition out of business.

It will be very important that locals continue to buy the products stocked by the independents, otherwise not only will the independents go out of business, but the small food manufacturing businesses and farmers will too, because they won't have any outlets.

If we don't want any more supermarkets, we must simply not shop at this new Tesco/One-Stop, and continue to use the excellent neighbouring shops. Also, we need to go to Calderdale's planning portal website and object to the planning application for a Sainsbury's when it is submitted.

Many local businesses will suffer as a result of supermarkets moving in: the high street shops and their suppliers will not survive if we as consumers shop in incoming supermarkets. If we want the town to remain interesting, attractive and busy, we must continue to support our independent shops and manufacturers. We must object to planning applications from supermarkets. Each of us will have a part to play in the future of the town through our everyday buying decisions. There is no two ways about it.

From Jenny B

Saturday, 7 December 2013

Goodness me, by the sounds of some of these posts we are having a nuclear power station forced into our midst!
A small sainsburys local store, a small supermarket at Mytholm, and the refurbished Spar maketh not a threat to wipe out local independents in one fell swoop.

So Tesco are using their OneStop brand to take over the spar. This will be replacing like with like. The last time I popped in the Spar I didn't see a glut of local produce, rather a convenience store with the majority of products being Spar branded.

Oasis stocks mainly Nisa branded goods and a few local items eg beers and curries. Our other 'supermarket' is regularly slated for the quality of its lacklustre produce.

Who are all these people that are going to desert our great little shops for these heinous giants of the retail industry? Who would choose to buy cellophane packaged meat; long life imported milk,or out of season chrysanthemums in one place?

We aren't stupid, we can choose where to shop. I for one find it quite offensive to be ordered by the pro-supermarket few where to do my weekly shop.

Choice creates healthy competition. Our over priced local shops may have to be more competitive, then maybe me and many others will actually spend our money in Hebden rather than other larger towns with more choice.

From Jon B

Sunday, 8 December 2013

I just hope that the One Stop will still have a paypoint so I can top up my gas and electric tokens. The one in CoOp keeps crashing and there's nowhere else round here to top up.

That's my only concern about the new developments.

From Eleanor Land

Sunday, 8 December 2013

I am grateful for the information that One Stop is Tesco's masquerading under another name. I don't like the way Tesco operates, so whatever name they use, they definitely won't be getting any custom from me.

From Graham Barker

Sunday, 8 December 2013

If they smarten their act up some more, the logical winner in this battle of the supermarkets could be the Co-op, because they’ll remain the biggest in a soon-to-be saturated market.

And convenience stores are only convenient up to a point, so even if we end up with a dizzying choice of them, it’s likely that not much will really change. Many of us will still have to go further afield for our main shopping trips.

It’s hard to believe that Sainsbury’s, Tesco and others won't come to a similar conclusion, so the outlook may not be good for a supermarket on the Brown’s site and with luck Sainsbury’s may have second thoughts.

From H Gregg

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

I revel in 'change' it's what humanity has always done,and it's exciting.

I don't like homogenisation and that's why I don't want to see Tesco's One Stop here. The same template used over and over, same lines, same offers, same look . . . . . the glorious difference between our towns will gradually diminish as these preset formats pervade them.

If the population of Hebden Bridge uses this place they will be contributing to the homogenisation of our country.

Let people know that! They might just understand why it's so important.

From Dave R

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

And does not the Spar have its own branding? Oasis carries the Nisa branding. Co-op the co-op branding. Targeting the One-stop brand because it is homogenous does not then make sense in this debate.
Rather than these prophet type pronouncement that we 'should be told this'.Why dont we just let people shop where they choose.

People's jobs are being placed at risk by this scaremongering, and threats to boycott one small convenience store. Hebden Bridge has far less shops now than it had in my youth, and we had 3 supermarkets then.

That the town has evolved and changed is not due to branded stores opening, it is due to there being a market for quirky or specialised shops. This market is targeted at local and tourist trade.

Thereby lies the issue, not many more tourists will pop in the 'one stop' than when it was Spar.

By the views on here, those locals who abhor Tesco's business practice, will boycott the One- Stop. That surely = more business for the Independents?

From Pedro de Wit

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Some of the responses are laughable. Where does this simplified view that supermarkets are bad and local shops are good come from? I know it is panto time but reality is more complicated. People can vote with their feet. If you don't want to go to Tesco just go somewhere else. I am not a Tesco shopper but I will definitely give this shop a go because it is likely that it will be better than the over priced Spar supermarket. We can carry on with 'Yes, it was' or 'No, it wasn't' but it won't make an ounce of difference. Just like in panto, 'it is behind you!' Get over it and let people spend their hard earned money wherever they want to.

From Tim B

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Pedro, on average each year, Tesco plc (the supermarket and bank chain) pays a rate of tax that is 8.3% less than its self-stated expected rate. Over a six-year period, this amounts to a missing £1.6 billion of expected tax, according to the Fair Tax Mark (an organization of tax and accountancy experts).

In general Independent Shops pay taxes at a much higher rate than the large corporations as they don't have an army of specialized accountants and lawyers playing with the loop holes.

At present, shopping at Tesco and similar tax avoiding shops, while expecting well maintained roads and excellent schools, is a self defeating activity.


From Pedro de Wit

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Tim, even if these figures are correct fact remains that Tesco employs 530.000 people and makes a huge contribution to UK taxes. The big supermarkets in this country create opportunities for hundreds of thousands of young people, they support communities, charities and local businesses. On top of that they offer the consumer very good value for money. Yes, like any big business they use accountants to find loopholes (local businesses don't?) but that doesn't mean that they are to blame for the potholes in our roads. The UK would be a lot worse off without them.

From Cath G

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Have followed contributions on here and my thoughts are if you don't change and allow growth then we would all still be living in caves and hunting for our own food. Now that sounds good, plenty of wildlife around rabbits, pheasants, grouse, deer and pigeons. Why not start hunting again that's one way of providing food for the table.

But honestly, come on folks, start living in the real world, as already noted you can chose where you want to shop if you do not like the super market chains then don't go into them.

In Hebden we have a bread shop that doesn't open on a weekend, we have 2 good butchers a greengrocers and other various shops as well. Todmorden also have these sort of shops and a good market. Sowerby Bridge and King Cross have similar sorts of shops so use them and stop moaning and groaning about what cannot be changed. I do not use the Co-op unless I'm desperate as I find it over-priced. I also prefer to buy meat from a butcher rather than a supermarket but I do use supermarkets for some things mainly due to it being convenient.

From Eleanor Land

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

I, like the majority of people in this country, pay all my taxes. In fact they are deducted at source.

Tesco, Amazon et al should be paying their taxes. There is no excuse in my book for them to avoid them. The fact that our government turns a blind eye to their scams is a disgrace. If they don't pay their fair share, it means people like me have to pay more, which is unfair.

The question I ask myself before giving my custom to these companies is why should I support them if they behave in this manner. I give as much of my custom as I can to smaller retailers like the shops in Hebden, because they generally pay their taxes.

From Paul Clarke

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

I love living In Hebden Bridge but sometimes the stench of rank hypocrisy pollutes the valley floor.

The latest example is 'OneStopgate' where a Facebook group has been set up that suggests people target lowly paid shopworkers in an attempt to drive the newly rebranded store out of town.

They have posted suggestions for a number of direct actions. They suggest filling a trolley with goods then 'forgetting your wallet'. Who do they think will have to put back the goods they have dumped?

Stickering the windows is another jolly wheeze. Who do they think will have to scrape off their stickers?

Dancing in the aisles is another. Who they think will have to decide if it is a protester or someone who has mental health issues who might need assistance from the authorities?

The answer to all the above is hardworking local people going about their lawful business in their workplace not the fatcats who should be the target.

I would have far more respect for the dissenters if they bought a few Tesco shares and went along to the AGM to have a go at people who are ruthlessly exploiting people, but that would require real balls not targeting local folk.

We are in the bizarre situation where we have another ruthless - but incompetent - big business in the Co-Op who market themselves as ethical which must be very exciting for the anti One Stop Folk.

Hang on, is this the same Co-op that allowed a drug addled incompetent to run its bank thus putting hardworking folk's savings at risk?

Is the the same Co-op that has a virtual monopoly in Hebden offering overpriced goods, expensive veg when actually in store, endless queues, a patheic dividend which is feeble compared to my Clubcard points and rubbish offers? A company that also pays lip service to union membership despite its much hyped ethical marketing.

The dissenters probably aren't union members as that would be giving into 'The Man' but the reality is Tesco has the best agreement in the sector with retail union Usdaw that is regarded as a model of its kind. Tesco staff have very competitive pay rates, access to learning linked to promotion, pensions, fully trained union representation when there is a problem, access to Union Learning Reps and a place on staff forums that determine pay. Can the Co-op say the same?

I have no issues with our local independents who contribute so much to our local economy but can they say they provide the same rights for their workers?

I am very aware that Tesco is not a particularly pleasant company but I am going to be a hypocrite and call for One stop to go when I shop with them. My big shop is always out of town in a supermarket as unlike many of the dissenters I don't have the cash to pay for overpriced organic produce and I like fish which I struggle to find in Hebden

Before the dissenters and their libertarian mates get on their high horses I am not suggesting for one second people do nowt about One Stop as if you think it is embodiment of all that is evil in the world then all you have to do is boycott the store. Don't go in and if you are in the majority then it will close because it is will not be viable.

I'm sure if you win then on the day you have thrown hardworking local people on the dole I will be able to open my front door and listen to capitalism come crashing down around us as the One Shop team close their store.

PS. I've just filled my first Festive Fandango card so do support local independents where I can.

From Dave R

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Its not often that I agree with Paul Clarke, but in this debate he has it spot on.

I saw the Facebook page, prior to the admin making it private. Obviously they attracted lots of criticism in respect of their militant views. Some of the ideas were verging on the ridiculous. Who on earth would want to dance and sing in the aisles to disrupt shoppers?

As usual, if you didn't share their viewpoint you were shouted down, and the group's status was changed to avoid critical and personal comments being posted. Very undemocratic!

Storm in a teacup if you ask me.

Use the supermarkets or don't and stop this petty hate campaign against stores' ethics hitting honest hard working people because that is what the anti Tesco lot are doing here.

From Tim B

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Quick video here pointing out money spent in locally owned shops stays local. The converse of which is money spent in transnational chains goes elsewhere, leaving us all poorer.

Quick personal experience on the 'local food is too expensive' argument. I've just started getting a 'totally local' box from Valley Organics, organic food from nearby growers for £10 per week. As a family of three we are getting so much fresh veg we have to make a real effort to eat it all in a week. Not bad for a tenner!

From Anne H

Thursday, 12 December 2013

As far as I can see Tesco's One Stop aims to serve the same type of customer as the Spar did - people who pop in for milk and go out with some cornflakes, sausages, chocolate and a bottle of wine! But hopefully they will be better quality and equal or better value for money than the Spar. They are both chains of convenience stores and will sell mostly convenience foods. It will probably compete more with Oasis than Spar ever did, but I think there is probably room for 2 convenience stores in Hebden which provide many of the same items but some items that are specific to them.

But why Sainsbury thinks there would be room for a third convenience store I can't fathom - and the site is less central, so I can't see it being successful.

As for the supermarket at the Mytholm site, I think it would have to be big enough to do a complete weekly family shop in order for people to change their habit of going to nearby Tesco, Lidl, Asda etc. And it would have to be competitive on price, which I think is unlikely if it is a Booth's.

From Dave T

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Dont entirely agree with Ann H. Booths do well in towns with independent shops eg. Clitheroe and Ilkley even when there's one of the big players there.

From Bob Deacon

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

I want to make a more general point about the way in which the planning process and planning pemissions are being abused in Hebden Bridge. Here is the text of a letter sent to the HB Times.

Readers may recall that the planning application for the development of the Old Gate fustian premises in Hebden Bridge was due to expire on 20th Feb 2011. On 16th Feb the developers abused that decision by simply knocking a hole in the wall (making it look like work had started) and then left it untouched for a further two years. This summer they knocked the building down saying they were about to build the planned shops and apartments. Nothing has happened since leaving a scar in the town centre.

Now consider the "proposal" to build a Sainsbury on the Old Fire Station site. The planning permission the developers obtained to build retail premises and houses on that site expires on December 24th 2013. The company "will soon be seeking planning permission for the revised scheme" (HB Times Dec 12th). What we are seeing is developers hanging on to land, making no use of it.

Someone said recently about land hoarders "if you don't use it lose it". A strategy is needed to stop this. The Hebden Bridge Partnership in its Vision 2020, said "it might be possible to design an integrated and holistic project which would use all of the land between Hangingroyd Lane and Valley Road in a much more imaginative way". What is needed is that Hebden Royd and Calderdale oppose the application. That would create time for the Partnership, Town Council, and others to develop alternative plans perhaps involving low cost housing, retail outlets, gardens and maybe studios. Maximum use should be made of the new Localism Act to explore options to purchase the land through a community share issue. Let's stop the rot of developers abusing the planning process

From Kez Armitage

Thursday, 19 December 2013

I visited the new Tesco in Crown Street yesterday. It's exactly like the old Spar - same (fairly limited) choice, same staff, but just a little bit cleaner and brighter.

I really think the anti-supermarket campaigners have got this one wrong. Personally, I have no problem in swapping Spar - a privately owned company which, by its own admission, is "the largest retail food chain in the world" but whose profits go to a very few individuals, with Tesco - a publicly owned company, a large proportion of whose profits come back to all of us through our pensions and savings plans.

So essentially, it’s much as it was. Only with Tesco, at least we get something back.

From Tim B

Thursday, 19 December 2013

"So essentially, it’s much as it was. Only with Tesco, at least we get something back." Apart from £1,600,000,000 tax

From Kez Armitage

Saturday, 21 December 2013

A propos Tesco avoiding taxes, they’re only doing what we’d all do, had we the opportunity!

Nobody particularly likes paying more tax than they absolutely have to, and those on higher incomes will usually employ accountants and advisers to legitimately minimize their tax bills. As it is with them, so it is with organizations.

If the system allows tax avoidance (rather than tax evasion, which is illegal), then it is the system which needs changing, not the organizations, which are simply doing what they have done since time immemorial – maximize their profits. If you don’t like the system, then surely your arguments and actions should be against those who devise the system rather than those who legitimately operate under it.

And yes, we can put moral and emotional pressure on companies like Tesco. We can even put financial pressure on them and vote with our feet, but judging by the fact that Tesco have a larger market share than any other supermarket (at one point one in every seven pounds spent in this country went into a Tesco till), it would be more than an uphill struggle. Most people are generally happy with the service they get from Tesco.

Anyhow there’s no need for me to be an apologist for a British success story. We ought to be proud that a simple market trader should, in the space of 60 or so years, turn his stall into one of the biggest and most successful British companies ever. Oh and that alleged £1.6 billion tax shortfall – I wonder what happens to that? Well look at Tesco’s reports and accounts and you’ll see that nearly half their profits go back to their shareholders. And who are they? Well over 80% are pension funds and other investment funds, and that means all of us, if you rely, either now or in the future, on a private or a state pension.

And of course there’s much more. Tesco’s charitable donations (£25m in cash in 2012 - £74m including staff and management time etc) work out at nearly £11,000 per annum for each of their 6784 worldwide stores. And more still – the 20% of owners who are not pension funds are people like me who have a modest personal shareholding in a few companies, including Tesco. A lot of my dividends wing their way back into the local community through my visits to pubs, shops and elsewhere in our town. Tesco quite simply ain’t the ogres that some would have us believe.

From Eleanor Land

Monday, 23 December 2013

I'd just like to say that I would not and never have avoided paying my taxes. I am not impressed by people or companies who do, because it results in more tax having to be paid by the rest of us who have no choice, which is unfair. Not everyone in this country is completely selfish thank goodness.

Tesco have the gained the reputation they have by their own actions. The most important thing to me is the tax avoidance, and I am definitely not proud of them just because they started as a market stall. They are what they are, a company which take every opportunity to avoid paying their tax, just like many other corporations. Our government seems to agree with this action, and operates in their favour against the interests of the rest of taxpayers. I would prefer Tesco to pay their fair share of tax, instead of throwing the occasional bone to the charity sector.

It was inevitable that we would get the big supermarkets in Hebden Bridge. I will not be giving them my custom and continue to support the smaller retailers.

From Paul Clarke

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Eleanor, it's good you have the money to do all your shopping in indies but not everyone does. I'm glad you are exercising your right to boycott rather than dancing in the aisles.

Meanwhile, One Stop is up and running and the town hasn't changed in any significant way except lots of hot air and bluster.

From Iain H

Sunday, 29 December 2013

There are lots of valid criticisms to make about Tesco and what they do, but tax avoidance is perfectly legal.

Any company that deliberately pays more tax than it needs to is swindling its shareholders, who are mostly pension funds a out of the time.

The blame for poor tax laws lies with the governments who make the laws, not with the companies that abide by them. Tesco are no worse than any other firm - or any individual with an ISA or other tax-avoiding scheme.

From Eleanor Land

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Paul, you seem to have the impression that I am well off. I am a pensioner with a limited income, but I am careful where I spend my money. I love the independent shops in Hebden Bridge, and I have bought all my Xmas presents here, because in general they offer items you can't find in chain stores. I would not wish to stop anyone from using One Stop. However, that will not prevent myself or others pointing out the practices of the owners. Reputation is everything in the world of commerce, and some companies would do well to remember that.

From Jon Morris

Monday, 13 January 2014

I'm glad to read that provisional planning permission for the old fire station development has expired. The "temporary" car park has been very beneficial to the area and is full every weekend and on market days. If the site is developed, where will those cars go?

I hope it stays as it is for as long as possible.

From Bob Deacon

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Sainsbury's have already submitted an application to sell alcohol in their supermarket on Valley Road; a supermarket for which they have not yet even applied for planning permission to build!

There have been several objections so the public hearing to consider the Sainsbury application will be held in Halifax Town Hall on 29 January 2014 commencing at 14.00.

Whether or not one agrees with selling alcohol I think a large presence at this meeting might indicate to the Planning Authority that any planning application by Sainsbury might not get an easy passage.


From Isla S

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Bob, where have they submitted the alcohol license application? Nothing on the council website? Unless its hidden somewhere in the depths! Or perhaps they have read this and withdrawn it?

From Bob Deacon

Friday, 17 January 2014

The application no longer appears on the web site as the deadline for commenting has passd. There may still be copies (dark blue) on the walls behind the car park (Fire Station Site). The information about the public hearing came directly from the licensing office.

From Neti P

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Hi Paul Clarke,

Being the initiator of the Fb group that you referred to in your post, it warrant a response, and I appologise for the delay.

I have considered the points you raised and how to reply which led to a very long post as it would have meant me copy and pasting each paragraph in order to it to have made sense.

I would like to have this conversation if you would, starting with a response to your initial comments.

I fundamentally believe that we are all on the same side in this ' Big Society' and that we all have our perspectives and that's our commonality we focus on and not our differences.

From Cllr Janet Battye

Thursday, 6 February 2014

An issue that I'm not sure that has been picked up: from their licensing application (due to be heard in Halifax Town Hall on Thurs afternoon next week), I think that Sainsbury's are planning on having the proposed shop open 24hrs/day. While this may be convenient for some, I think that it'll be a nuisance for others. Is this what people want in HB?

From Jenny Slaughter

Friday, 7 February 2014

Some more thoughts on this discussion - see local blog, The Political Vegetable

From Gilly Sloper

Saturday, 8 February 2014

I was saddened to read of the proposed supermarkets being planned for my home town. Unfortunately these supermarkets seem to be an unstoppable tide throughout the country. I live in a small village in Cornwall which used to be well served with local produce and local deliveries. Now the first shop I reach when leaving the village in either direction is a Tesco supermarket.

From Jenny B

Monday, 10 February 2014

One derelict concrete 1960's building on the edge of town. One small convenience store that the majority of people will walk to. Cue mass hysteria from the Nimby's. A few years ago Sainsburys would have been welcomed over the common old Tesco one stop that has, shock horror sneaked in via that old independent the Spar shop.

Syria? South west England floods? Get a life?

From Martin F

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Ah, nimbys: that wonderful expression to refer to someone who objects.

I have been called a nimby a few times. Each time it was intended as an insult.

I, however, took it as a compliment to mean someone who does not want the area where he lives to be spoilt by some development.

Yes, I'm a nimby.

See also:

HebWeb News: Sainsbury's plans now online

HebWeb News: Protests as Town Council discusses the Sainsburys bid