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North Walsham fears Tesco expansion

PUBLISHED: 13:54 28 January 2009 | UPDATED: 09:22 13 July 2010

DOUBLING the size of Tesco's 1,300 sqm store in Stalham could further jeopardise North Walsham town centre, say worried councillors.

They fear villagers from parishes around Walsham might switch to do their supermarket and other shopping in Stalham.

DOUBLING the size of Tesco's 1,300 sqm store in Stalham could further jeopardise North Walsham town centre, say worried councillors.

They fear villagers from parishes around Walsham might switch to do their supermarket and other shopping in Stalham.

North Walsham town councillor Mary Seward told fellow members on Tuesday: “If a store becomes bigger and more competitive with North Walsham's Sainsbury's then we will lose more shoppers and our very, very fragile town centre will suffer.”

Councillors are to register their concern with North Norfolk District Council's planning chiefs who asked for the council's comments on Tesco's application in view of its wider impact.

A survey for Tesco revealed that 15pc of customers at its Stalham store used to shop regularly at Sainsbury's in North Walsham.

And a consultant's report for Tesco, supporting its application, states that a survey of households in the Stalham store's catchment area showed that 42pc did a main food shop there.

The report adds: “However 57pc indicated that they still undertake a main food shop at locations outside of the catchment area. This suggests that the current offer at the Tesco store in Stalham has not been sufficient to compete with the better provision in surrounding towns.”


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