Consider impact of supermarkets

From: Kathy Aston

Sheffield Green Party

Your description of big supermarkets “consolidating their grip on Sheffield” is a good one (Telegraph June 9).

The council investment of £125,000 to improve Hillsborough Shopping Centre offers welcome assistance but it will be undermined by the supermarkets that surround it.

Asda has just opened at Parson Cross and a big Sainsbury’s is proposed for the Fletchers bakery site, which will massively impact on all local shops, and add to the traffic jams in the Leppings Lane and Penistone Road area.

As a local resident I get letters from Sainsbury’s highlighting how nice the building will look, while they push the creation of new jobs to the planners and in the media. The reality is that the shops further up the hill at Wadsley Bridge will be devastated, and Hillsborough Shopping Centre will be pushed further towards extinction. When a supermarket opens people don’t suddenly start buying more, they get pulled in because it’s convenient, and more and more trade leaks away from local shops as time moves on. For every job created, more will be lost from the surrounding area.

Of course, the Sainsbury’s application could be rejected, which would mean that Fletchers would need to explore other options for developing the site.

Local people need to weigh up the overall impact on their local community and let the council know so they make an informed decision. But you will have to respond quickly - planning application 10/03381/FUL is due for decision on June 21.