It is rather surprising that Tesco want to come to a small town like Sherborne, which already has two supermarkets, several convenience stores and specialists’ shops serving it already. Of course there is then a very large Tesco in Yeovil in addition to ASDA and Morrisons all of which are only a few miles away. Maybe Tesco sees that in a while the area near the proposed site will be full of houses at Barton Farm – a nightmare scenario that many of us are striving to avoid. Indeed such a store development, with the road infrastructure involved to deliver it, could make the development on Barton Farm easier to achieve.
Such a store is likely to damage Sherborne in other ways too including:
The PR machine of Tesco has already started its spin indicating that it is a much needed shopping facility, which we would dispute and that it will create an extra 200 jobs –no doubt a gross figure which doesn’t take into account the jobs lost at the hotel and other businesses as a result of them opening.
The proposal by Tesco provides another reason why Sherborne needs special status to protect its Heritage assets and the environment in which the town is situated. The problem is that the mighty Tesco tends to march on and add to the destruction of fragile Towns which have a unique nature. If this happen in Sherborne then achieving any form of Heritage status in the future may well be too late!
Tesco with its money and power is difficult to fight but is seems we might well have to take on that fight. If so it will require huge verbal and maybe financial support to oppose them.