24 September 2012 - MIA at MARPLE FOOD FESTIVAL
What has Marple in Action to do with Marple Food Festival?
WELL EVERYTHING! If you were in Marple town centre on Friday and Saturday, and thousands were, you will have enjoyed all that makes Marple a great place to live in. Friendly people walking in from Hibbert Lane, Rose Hill, Station Road etc., or arriving by car or on the bus from High Lane, Offerton, Romiley, New Mills and beyond, to enjoy the community spirit that flourishes in Marple and buy local foods from local shopkeepers. There was music from local bands and buskers, charity events and the spirit that MARPLE IN ACTION is fighting to preserve. We have a town that has a centre that works for us all. Building an ASDA supermarket on Hibbert Lane will destroy that by spoiling a pleasant residential area with heavy traffic, late night opening and a floodlit car park and threatening the existing town centre businesses that are the backbone of the Food Festival.
AND WHAT FOR? To produce more profit for ASDA's American owner's Wal-Mart, based in Bentonville, Arkansas who are reputed to be the world's third largest public corporation. They are not interested in improving the education of Marple's youngsters or improving our town with a 'neighbourhood store'. Local shopkeepers live locally, employ local people, buy local produce and recycle money spent with them in the area rather than by transfers out to Asda head office or to Wal-Mart in the USA.
JOBS - ASDA claim to be creating jobs in Marple. Any supermarket jobs going to locals would be years away as the construction of the Buxton Lane site would have to be complete and the College moved before the supermarket could even be built. In the meantime local businesses will be under threat and jobs will begin to be LOST. Evidence in other towns shows that more local jobs are lost than are created by supermarket developments.
A SUPERMARKET ON CHADWICK STREET is an issue that MIA has not so far commented on. We were set up to fight a supermarket on Hibbert Lane and to try to protect the householders and businesses affected by that - and we think we will win. The Council in the meantime have put their car park on Chadwick Street up for sale with the possibility of a supermarket gaining planning permission. The facts are:
This land is in the Marple District Centre retail zone
It belongs to the Council who will receive a substantial sum from selling it
The Council can grant planning permission (subject to normal guidelines)
They appear to be willing to as it fits into the SMBC Strategic Plan for Marple
So Hibbert Lane or Chadwick Street – which is best for Marple?
Many will have noticed that the company selected by Stockport Council to develop their site, Kirkland Developments, placed an advert in the Marple Review Festival Edition. Why didn't ASDA think of that?
We await with interest to see the plans and proposals for Chadwick Street as they will have a major impact on Marple centre, and on the prospects for an ASDA store on Hibbert Lane.