Heritage - I'm a huge fan of Private Eye's From the Messageboards, so I understand where you are coming from.
Dukey - you say there are other important issues - I agree - which is why it's important to scrutinise the character and quality of the candidates.
As much as some people are "bored" of the supermarket issue it is very important to the future of Marple, whatever conclusion you come to.
I have some sympathy with the "get off your arse" view - but these things are all a matter of degree. Expressing an opinion on a forum or in a pub or school gate is one step on a very, very long tail of community awareness and participation. Standing for office and serving as a councillor is another. But so is getting involved in local sports clubs as I do, as Howard does, and so is organising the festivals which have been hugely important to Marple's self confidence and self image.
This campaign is an opportunity to look beyond it and have an important public discussion about what kind of town we live in - what the civic society have put together is inspiring - the Portas Pilot bid was uplifting - but you can't view them in isolation.
You also have to weigh up the local political angles. The Lib Dems are fighting tooth and nail for Marple because it is highly likely they will drop seats in other parts of Stockport making a "coalition council" all the more likely. That's why this election is important.