Aldeburgh: Tesco debate continues

TRADERS opposed to a new supermarket in a popular seaside town have hit back at claims the controversial scheme would provide “much-needed retail competition”.

As revealed in Monday’s East Anglian Daily Times, a planning application has now been submitted to Suffolk Coastal District Council to build a Tesco Express store and five flats in Saxmundham Road, Aldeburgh.

Clive Thompson, from developers Pigeon Investment Management Ltd, said where possible they had refined the plans in line with local feedback.

“This is an exciting opportunity for Aldeburgh to finally improve this important site which has lain vacant for almost seven years,” Mr Thompson said. “

“We have listened to the response from local people, planning officers and design experts and where possible have built their ideas into the plans.

“The proposals represent significant investment into Aldeburgh providing five new flats and much-needed retail competition.

“The Tesco Express store will give people more choice which will ultimately encourage them to stay shopping locally, rather than leaving the area to spend their money elsewhere.”

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Tesco’s Louise Gosling said the store would provide basic groceries that would offer “great value” for those on a lower budget.

But Claire Bruce-Clayton, of Lawsons Delicatessen, said: “It will be competing first and foremost against the Co-op because it will be offering customers very similar products – there won’t be more choice.

“Also, it won’t be cheaper prices. I recently did a shop of 20 everyday items at a Tesco Express store in a Suffolk town.

“On the same day I did exactly the same shop at a larger Tesco store in a Suffolk town. The Tesco Express was 9% more expensive.”