Ulverston needing a new ‘heart’, meeting hears
Last updated at 16:21, Wednesday, 20 November 2013
BUSINESS owners and councillors in Ulverston were among those who gathered on Monday night to discuss the future of the town's high street.
The meeting, held at the British Legion in Brogden Street, was organised by Roger Martlew of Ulverston Progress.
The group has been set up to support the building of a supermarket in Brewery Street and promote other initiatives to rejuvenate the town’s retail sector.
It has been critical of the campaign group Keep Ulverston Special for launching a legal challenge against the development and called on the town council to do more to help local businesses.
Mr Martlew said: “KUS are saying that one of the reasons Ulverston is special is the independent shops, absolutely. The problem is, we are losing them.
“The town is shrinking in on itself and there’s still quite a lot of empty shops around the place.
“They say that a supermarket is always bad for a town, it isn’t.”
While not everyone in attendance agreed with Ulverston Progress’ stance on KUS and the council, the gathering served as an open forum for residents to discuss ideas to boost the town’s high street.
The majority of those in attendance said they were in favour of a new supermarket on the site of the old Robinson’s Brewery.
Councillor Janette Jenkinson said: “I always wanted the supermarket and I took a lot of stick from a lot of people in this town, but I also had a lot of praise from people as well.
“The reason I voted for the supermarket was because it became very obvious more than half of people in this town don’t always shop in Ulverston.
“We need residents to come into Ulverston to shop in a supermarket and then go on to shop in the special shops that we have. That’s the way to generate wealth for everybody.”
Gavin Knott, who runs Appleseeds Health Store in Market Street, said: “I think it’s a gamble but my heart comes down in favour.
“Ulverston needs a new heart in the town centre because footfall is decreasing. It will continue to decrease unless we have a new approach to the town.”
Robinson’s received the all-clear to start work on the site from South Lakeland District Council in October. But development was put on hold after KUS launched a legal challenge, claiming SLDC had not followed proper planning procedure.
In a statement issued before the meeting, a spokesman for Keep Ulverston Special said: “Mr Martlew has missed the point completely about KUS’s legal challenge to SLDC. Whether or not a supermarket would be good for Ulverston, KUS is saying two things: firstly, evidence shows the brewery site is a totally unsuitable place to build one and, secondly, SLDC did not do everything they should have done when they gave it the go-ahead.”
First published at 15:47, Wednesday, 20 November 2013
Published by http://www.nwemail.co.uk
Have your say
OK KUS, So WHERE exactly IS suitable for a supermarket in or near Ulverston ?
So, given that the Robinsons site has been deemed unsuitable for a supermarket, and no supermarket that would benefit Ulverston support it either - please remind the people of Ulverston why the Sainsburys site was turned down? The majority of Ulverston's residents supported it - plus it was going onto land historically ear marked for commercial use. The road infrastructure is more or less already in place as well. The Sainsburys will attract people from Greenodd through to Dalton - as well as the people of Barrow who fancy a change from the usual names. Losing Sainsburys was losing a huge opportunity for the town.