Views over supermarket plan

MARGARET Woodhead`s ‘The times are changing’ response to my letter (Express, June 30) contained a few inaccuracies in my opinion.

My family have been involved in manufacturing and retailing in the Castleford areas for well over 150 years – firstly in pottery and latterly in food distribution. As the pottery went out of business many, many years ago I agree that times are continually changing and I was, of course, only using fruit and vegetables as an example of the demise of small specialist retailers in towns following the proliferation of large supermarkets.

I do agree that Carlton Lanes has, overall, been beneficial for the town and I am pleased to read Ms Woodhead is not going to forsake the town centre in the future. However, I am concerned by what she means by “having to travel to Pontefract for basic food” when in Castleford we have all the small specialist food stores that anyone could need.

We have many supermarkets including a new 24-hour Asda, Morrisions, Tesco Express, Sainsbury Local, Co-op and Aldi and it should be noted these come with available parking – something that all town centres should get if small businesses are to survive and prosper for the wider benefit of the community.

It is important people are not fooled by the ‘new jobs’ carrot. A study conducted by the National Retail Planning Forum concluded that ‘new superstores have, on average, a negative net effect on retail employment with an estimated average net job loss of 276 per superstore.’

ANDREW ROBINSON

D and R Group

Aire Street

Castleford

COUNCILLOR Wallis said in the Express March 29: “We need to make sure a supermarket doesn’t have a negative impact on the town centre. We want the town centre to grow – especially in these tough economic times.”

Colleagues in Castleford Tigers’ Supporter’s Club and Tigers Together have spent the last few weeks at the ground in the town centre and Junction 32 talking to the people what they want. Nearly 20,000 people say they want investment in Castleford. Planning for the supermarket not only develops a supermarket but funds road improvements both in Wheldon Road and Glass Houghton. This will open up further land for development bringing much needed jobs and investment to the town. It also funds a stadium which can be used for more than just rugby. We spoke to residents, shoppers businesses and visitors who gave an overwhelming response to support investment into Castleford. Coun Wallis should take notice of the people of Castleford’s wishes.

JOHN HUGHES

Castleford Tigers Supporters Club

member

Stainburn Avenue

Castleford