Protest against new supermarket on former Rainham pub site

TRADERS in Rainham are protesting against the opening of a new supermarket convenience store on the site of a former pub.

Tesco hopes to open an Express store on the site of the Cherry Tree in Rainham Road in the summer.

Some businesses in nearby Cherry Tree Lane have started a petition against the shop which they say is not needed and will damage the variety of shops in the area.

Lisa Clark, of Lisa’s Flowers, said: “We’ve already got three Tescos within about a mile of the area – at Airfield Way, Elm Park and Bridge Road – as well as at the Heathway which isn’t too far away either. They are absolutely killing the small businesses, times are hard enough as it is.”

Sailesh Patel, of Yogi News, said: “There are so many supermarkets near here already, I won’t be happy if Tesco opens.”

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Tracy Morrison, of Jade 2 dry cleaners, said: “I don’t suppose it will be bad for us as such but I can see a lot of the small shops round here becoming boarded up as a result of it.”

Tesco spokesman Carol Leslie said: “This an excellent opportunity to regenerate this former pub site and bring it back to use. We believe it will benefit the area by encouraging people to shop locally and also cut down on car journeys to other areas.

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“It will also be extremely convenient for residents living nearby who have no transport or those preferring to shop on foot.”

She said that it will be a small store, suitable for a residential area and that it will create about 20 jobs.

The Cherry Tree closed in May and was the subject of a planning application last year to turn it into a mixture of homes and commercial units, which was withdrawn.

The petition is available in several shops in Rainham Road and Cherry Tree Lane including the ones mentioned in this article.

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