News release: BEDMINSTER RESIDENTS AGAINST TESCO’S EXPANSION INTO ASHTON GATE (BERATE)

NEWS 5th July 2009

Greater Bedminster Residents meet to form “No-Superstore” Campaign Group

More than 70 people from Greater Bedminster packed into a meeting room at the Southville Centre on Friday night, to hear more about the proposed Tesco superstore development at Ashton Gate Stadium.

Local residents, Chris Uttley and Tom Griffin, who organised the meeting said, “Whilst we are seeing plenty of information about the supposed benefits, there has been no opportunity for public discussion about the massive increase in traffic, noise, air pollution and disruption created by a store that opens 7 days a week for virtually all day.

“We wanted to give all residents and traders an opportunity to voice their concerns without the stage-managed atmosphere of the Public Relations devised consultation they have had so far”

Traders from North Street, people who live in close proximity to the stadium and residents from throughout the area, including many Bristol City Football Club supporters, heard more about the plans and were given an opportunity to voice their concerns.

Many people at the meeting commented on how inappropriate the proposal seems. Abigail Stollar, a Southville resident said, “ I shop all the time on North Street. What’s being proposed will contribute very little to the local community and will have a massive impact on the existing shops and businesses. I like the fact I can walk round the corner with my kids to buy virtually everything I need”.

Some residents highlighted the rushed manner in which they were being consulted and the ad-hoc way in which information is being released.

In many cases, people who live very close to the stadium had not been consulted at all. Only 3 people raised their hands when asked how many had been approached directly for their views.

People were particularly angry at the way this development has been linked with plans for a new stadium and the Bristol World Cup bid and the attempt to brand those who oppose a new superstore as anti-World cup and anti-Bristol City. Many people said this was “cynical”, “ill-judged” and “divisive”.

George Ferguson, owner of the Tobacco Factory, summed up the feeling from the meeting saying, “There is nothing like a major threat to its future to galvanise a community. This is an appalling proposal – another giant shopping shed set in a massive sea of car parking.

“The potential economic and environmental damage to this area is immense. I fully recognise the importance of Bristol City’s success but it is quite wrong to imply that a new supermarket is something to do with the new stadium or the World Cup – the two issues have to be de-coupled.

“It is inappropriate and legally dubious to consider the applications for the new stadium and the new supermarket simultaneously”.

The proposal to create a group to fight the proposal was welcomed by all those who attended and many volunteered to be directly involved.

BERATE has now begun a petition against the superstore and will continue to oppose the plans and gauge the response of a larger cross-section of the community towards the development.

For further Information: berate_ashtongate@hotmail.com

This entry was posted in Ashton Vale, Bedminster, Bristol, Bristol South, Local government, Planning, Politics, Southville, World Cup 2018 and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

51 Responses to News release: BEDMINSTER RESIDENTS AGAINST TESCO’S EXPANSION INTO ASHTON GATE (BERATE)

  1. Tony says:

    Good to see you covering the BERATE meeting. I wonder if the Evening Post will?!?

  2. Jozer says:

    Let’s hope the evil post will give this group due coverage. At the moment all they are doing is relaying SL’s moral blackmail, with the same story being published over & over again under a different headline.

  3. john jones says:

    When they opened the Tesco’s in Brislington back in the 1980’s they made all sorts of promises about how they wouldnt expand (reneged upon repeatedly)and how they wouldnt effect local shops etc. However 20 years later several independent food shops in Brislington Hill and Sandy Park (for example 1 butchers shop instead of 4) have closed and the number of Newsagents has halved. Add in a Sainsbury on the Bath road and all you are left with is fast food joints, estate agents and other assorted crap.

    they also flogged/leased some of their land to Bristol the Council who proceeded to build a ‘mental hospital’ . The local residents protested but the Labour mob pushed it through.

  4. Joan Johns says:

    John said “When they opened the Tesco’s in Brislington back in the 1980’s they made all sorts of promises about how they wouldnt expand.”

    Does anyone still have copies of any letters etc?
    The evidence would b useful for BERATE.

    The impact of Tesco and Sainbury’s on Brislington shows us what would happen to North St. if Tescos went to Ashton.

  5. Martyn Whitelock says:

    I think ALL supermarkets should be limited in size, similar to that in Redfield. This would allow other shops to coexist on the same high street, as appears to be happening fairly successfully on Church Road. The American hypermarket model is vile. They are full of cheap crap which people don’t really need.

  6. DN says:

    john jones, what the fuck is wrong with having a psychiatric hospital in your area?

    It’s not like that will take business from local shops, is it?

    Or are you one of those bigoted idiots who thinks psychiatric patients are all dangerous loons who should be banged up in a Victorian prison in the middle of nowhere?

    Grow up.

  7. john jones says:

    DN , thank you for kind thoughts

    1) The point was to show TESCO’s do not consider local people in making their decisions just their bottom line. Bristol CC did not consult just imposed despite strong local objections and stitched it up with Tescos. Incidently building the hospital over allotment land of which there is now a shortage and a longer waiting list. I’m not a bigot but I am a gardiner.

    2) Do I have a Victorian view on Mental Illness?. I don’t think I expressed a view but thanks for assuming.

    3) Do I think the Local Govt should respect the wishes of local people before imposing things on them. Yes. Or do you believe that bureaucrats know best and stuff the taxpayer/local residents?. All for the greater good and all that.

    4) Am I a Nimby?. Possibly, but most people are when it comes down to it. Especially in an area which has had all manner of things imposed on it without consent…. Supermarkets, increased traffic, threatened closure of amenities such as swimming baths…etc

  8. inks says:

    The lady quoted upthread as saying she can buy almost all she needs on North Street must have a monotonous diet. Probably she does most of her shopping in the mini-Tesco?

    “…and all you are left with is fast food joints, estate agents and other assorted crap. ”

    That’s North Street today. Plus Clarke’s pies.

    99.99% of Bedminster residents already do their weekly shop in Asda or some other supermarket with convienence shopping for fags, cheap booze and bits and bobs in the meantime. Having a big Tesco down on the City ground won’t make any difference.

    Obviously Bristol doesn’t have a snowball’s chance of being a world cup city of course, that’s just silly. It’s not as if England’s likely to win the 2018 bid and, if we do, Bristol’s not the first city that comes to mind to hold games.

    Anyway, it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks, Mr Tesco’s decided he wants to build a new shop. He’ll get his way and, guess what, everyone will do their shopping there.

  9. melanie scott says:

    Get off your high horse DN you sound like a right self righteous prick. Amaze yourself and ask around. You might find most peoples first reaction, outside your liberal tolerance enclave, to the news that they were to have a phyciatric hospital built near them would not be

    ‘great news, its just what the areas been waiting for, now we’re on the map.. whens it going up I cant wait’.

    But hey I’m sure you are right, those bigots in Bris don’t know how lucky they are. After all its not as though anybody er violent will be staying there….oh wait some breaking news…

    http://www.thisisbristol.co.uk/brislington/Death-plunge-dad-John-Hogan-Bristol/article-1087759-detail/article.html

    Well DN perhaps you’d ilke to put him up, seeing as you’re not a bigot.

  10. DN says:

    melanie scott. Fuck you asshole.

    1) I’m not a fuckin liberal; I hate liberals.

    2) I’m not self-righteous (though I might be a prick).

    3) I’m certainly not tolerant; especially not of idiots like you.

    4) I’m from Brislington.

    5) I’ve been a psychiatric patient on several occasions, so I think I know what I’m talking about. At least more than you and the fuckin witch hunting Evening Post scum.

    john jones. You haven’t explained why decent people would object to a psychiatric hospital being built. What the fuck makes you think that allotments are more important that a hospital? If everyone had your small-minded attitude there would be no psychiatric hospitals anywhere. And probably no kids homes, bail hostels, traveller sites etc either. Shit, we’d probably have chased every immigrant out of the country years ago as well.

  11. melanie scott says:

    very angry man DN. Glad you got help. So if people dont agree with you and your priorities they’re all small minded bigots? Like the way you conflate some old bugger not wanting his allotment built over with being anti immigrant, anti traveller, anti childrens home, anti bail hostel etc. Nice touch.

  12. DN says:

    Fuck of you patronising wanker.

  13. Factoid says:

    Dear Joan, you can go on the planning section of BCC’s website, and see all the original plans, promises of square footage restrictions made around 1984. You can then read about the subsequent applications to expand it, against the original promise. Then you can read about the bogus proof of economy, job boosting powers the store would have. No mention of the local butchers all dying though. Good luck.

  14. Anon says:

    Also have a look at the history behind Tesco Golden Hill. All this should be presentable as evidence indicating that Tesco are not credible and cannot be trusted.

  15. Ella says:

    DN actually has a point will the dull and common prejudice of psychiatric patients and hospitals. That Scott person just sounds like a blithering idiot. Stop talking please. For everyone’s sake.

  16. Holly says:

    Sign the petition against the Tesco monopoly:
    http://epetitions.bristol.gov.uk/petition.php?id=262

  17. Pingback: BERATE discussed on The Bristol Blogger « Berate – Say No To Tesco

  18. BristolDave says:

    I still don’t see what is wrong with Tesco building a store near North Street. People living in the area should have the right to choose where they shop, rather than having their choice limited to “local shops” and that choice dictated to them by some hand-wringing, holier-than-thou, anti-coporate NIMBYs. It’s almost like they don’t trust the general public to make what they believe to be the “right” choice and so feel they must make the choice for them by trying to prevent a Tesco even opening up in the first place.

    If the Tesco store opens and some local shops have to close, do you know what that means? It means the local shops simply weren’t fucking good enough in the first place – either they didn’t stock a wide enough range or their prices were uncompetitive – neither of which is anyone else’s problem but their own. If they offer something people cannot already get at Asda or Sainsburys then they will stay open after Tesco opens as well. You’re searching for a problem that just doesn’t exist.

    As someone who lived in Bedminster for 4 years (but recently moved) – North Street is for the most part, pretty bloody awful. It has a nice bakery and there’s a pie shop, but what else? Estate agents, fast-food stores, a couple of pubs and a few run-down “trinket” shops selling utter fucking tat. Big deal.

    God sake, it’s not somewhere you can do your weekly shop, which is precisely why local residents ALREADY go to Asda or Sainsburys for the huge amount of things they need which North Street inevitably cannot provide for. Stop wistfully clinging onto an idea of “Local Shop Utopia” which simply doesn’t exist.

    People complained bitterly about Tesco Golden Hill when it opened (I remember people chaining themselves to trees) – now what happens? They all fucking shop there, because it’s convenient and cheap.

  19. redzone says:

    bristol dave said;
    People complained bitterly about Tesco Golden Hill when it opened (I remember people chaining themselves to trees) – now what happens? They all fucking shop there, because it’s convenient and cheap.

    exactly!! i know some of those people personally 😀
    i have to agree, local shop utopia doesn’t exist, but some will survive if they are viable.
    some do in fishponds rd , despite having a morrisons & a lidl’s store smack bang in the middle 😉

    i wonder if there would be all the campaigning if the new store was, say a M&S? 😕
    or is it all just about the tesco monopoly??

  20. Deano says:

    “People living in the area should have the right to choose where they shop, rather than having their choice limited to “local shops”

    “local residents ALREADY go to Asda or Sainsburys ”

    How can they go to Asda and Sainsbury’s if their choice is limited to “local shops”?

    What a complete and utter twat.

  21. Charlie Bolton says:

    Bristol Dave said

    ‘I still don’t see what is wrong with Tesco building a store near North Street. People living in the area should have the right to choose where they shop, rather than having their choice limited to “local shops” and that choice dictated to them by some hand-wringing, holier-than-thou, anti-coporate ‘

    Except of course, those of us who want to shop at the Southville Deli or Ashton Fruit and Veg will be denied that choice, because they will be forced out of business by corporate giants.

    Small business don’t have the margins enjoyed by the likes of Tesco.

  22. Gary Hopkins says:

    Charlie
    Still do not seem to have your position on whether you are for or against the proposed stadium and the world cup bid. Two of your colleages came up with some rather silly smokescreen but you are the leading green in the city and local so it is your voice that should be heard.

  23. Bristol boy says:

    This is hilarious. Within the space of just one comment section the anti-Tesco group is already bickering and imploding in upon itself. Most people in Bedminster are already shopping in supermarkets. There is very little else to say.

  24. BristolDave says:

    How can they go to Asda and Sainsbury’s if their choice is limited to “local shops”?

    Because their choice currently isn’t limited to local shops – and as pointed out by many including me, people in the North Street area already shop at Asda/Sainsburys so a Tesco wouldn’t make any difference – but it appears that this is what groups such as BERATE want.

    Anything else you’d like me to spell out for you?

    What a complete and utter twat.

  25. BristolDave says:

    Except of course, those of us who want to shop at the Southville Deli or Ashton Fruit and Veg will be denied that choice, because they will be forced out of business by corporate giants.

    So, like everyone basically in this debate your reasons for wanting/not wanting a Tesco are purely personal rather than altruistic.

    I guarantee for every person who wants to continue shopping “at their local deli” there will be someone who would appreciate the Tesco opening up so they can do their weekly shop without having to either drive to Asda/Sainsburys or lug their shopping back a long distance.

  26. Charlie Bolton says:

    Hi Gary

    The party hasn’t taken a formal view as yet.

    I will most likely object to the application for the stadium (need to look at all the documents first to finally decide).

    I have no problem with the concept of a new stadium, but problems with the details of this one

    I am ambivalent about the world cup bid.

  27. The Bristol Blogger says:

    And you Gary, haven’t told us how much this World Cup is going to cost.

    Apparently your council is “leading the bid” so presumably there’s some ball park figures knocking about?

    After all, you wouldn’t launch a major PR drive for a completely uncosted project would you?

  28. Deano says:

    “Because their choice currently isn’t limited to local shops – and as pointed out by many including me, people in the North Street area already shop at Asda/Sainsburys so a Tesco wouldn’t make any difference – but it appears that this is what groups such as BERATE want.”

    But BERATE aren’t campaigning for Asda and Sainsburys or any EXISTING store to be closed, are they? You’re just making that up to try and cover for the fact that you have made an arsehole of yourself.

    You also say ” a Tesco wouldn’t make any difference”

    So if it won’t make any difference why the fuck are Tesco paying £20m to City for the site and planning to spend another £120m building the thing?

    Waddya think – they just like to spend money? Or do you somehow think they are also going to build some consumers at the same time?

  29. BristolDave says:

    But BERATE aren’t campaigning for Asda and Sainsburys or any EXISTING store to be closed, are they?

    No, but BERATE appear to electing themselves to speak on everyone’s behalf without actually asking what they want, and denying North Street residents the CHOICE of another supermarket. Who the fuck are they to say on behalf of EVERYONE in Bedminster as to whether the community wants a Tesco store built or not? If I still lived in Bedminster, I’d want one, and I know many others who would too. If the local shops need the hand-wringing, holier-than-thou, anti-coporate NIMBYs to try and “force” a Tesco not to open in order to survice, then this suggests the only reason they’re open at all is because people haven’t got the (better) choice of a supermarket.

    So if it won’t make any difference why the fuck are Tesco paying £20m to City for the site and planning to spend another £120m building the thing?

    Because they’re hoping to “convert” a good chunk of existing Asda and Sainsburys customers, of course. But then you wouldn’t undestand that, because you’ve made an arsehole of yourself.

    Maybe someone could list the shops that would be “damaged” by a Tesco opening. I guarantee there’s not many. I don’t think, for example, that the tatty junk shops towards the bottom of the street that don’t sell anything that anyone actually wants to buy are really going to see a difference.

  30. Charlie Bolton says:

    ‘No, but BERATE appear to electing themselves to speak on everyone’s behalf’

    No they aren’t, they are speaking on behalf of those who oppose a supermarket. What proportion of the local population they represent on this issue remains to be seen, and it is their job to demonstrate such support.

    Personally, I think it will be high.

  31. The Bristol Blogger says:

    hand-wringing, holier-than-thou, anti-coporate NIMBYs to try and “force” a Tesco not to open

    It’s actually the other way round. Tesco are trying to “force” a superstore to open contrary to democratically agreed planning guidance and retail policy.

    Ultimately this is a question about who runs the city – a crappy supermarket chain or the people we elect.

    If you don’t agree with the planning guidance and the retail policy that’s fine. But to pretend that the people who do are anti-corporate nimbys is ridiculous. These policies have come from pro-market right of centre governments – first the Tories (prior to 1997) and then Labour (after 1997)

  32. Gary Hopkins says:

    The Ball park figure for the council to promote the city as a suitable venue and be part of the England bid is 100k. As a fair proportion of this is telling the world what a great place Bristol is this is not all lost even if we do not win the bid.
    If we are sucsessful and Bristol is a world cup venue there would be some extra costs as there is for any other event like the Harbour festival etc but the costs are comparatively small especially as it would advertise itself.
    There would be extra policing costs but the bulk of those could be recovered by the police from the operators.
    The comments from “Bristol Dave” as to where Tesco would get it’s business from help to illustrate a problem.
    They will of course come from a mixture of the small shops in the area,Sainsbury’s and Asda and also exra people travelling in to Bristol from Long Ashton etc.
    The local shops have little legal muscle but Asda and Sainsbury’s do have plenty.They will use that to its maximum to delay any planning approval of Tesco and whatever people’s point of view on that it means that the club’s present policy of relying on the Tesco sale, which will be dependant on planning permission, to fund the stadium has a weakness. For Bristol to be included instead of ,lets say Portsmouth, by the
    FA they will need certainty very early and a judicial review of planning instigated by Asda/ Sainsbury could be a killer. Without the World cup element there will still be a lot of support for a new stadium but I would judge much reduced.

  33. smilingdave says:

    Speaking as a City fan, local resident, regular shopper at North Street shops, Asda and Sainsbury, it would be great to have a new stadium, but not at any price – and this price is far too high, in my opinion. What a dull thing to do with the Ashton Gate site. And the way in which the football club have conned fans (by asking “do you support the world cup bid?” and using their answers as support for the Tesco plan) is shameful. (And why do people on here feel the need to be so rude to each other?)

  34. mikey says:

    why is there always an assumption that a supermarket will cause smaller specialist shops to close?

    i’d be astonished if all those who queue outside the butchers on north st will suddenly decide to go to tesco – why don’t they go to sainsburys now?

    and i’d also be astonished if tesco stock even a tenth of the southville deli’s products.

    good shops thrive, crappy shops close, life goes on.

  35. Wood Harris says:

    The meaning of Berate “To scold angrily and at length”

    This is a very accurate title to describe some of the people who have moved into the Southville area over the last few years. I wonder when they were selling up to move here and take it upon themselves to lecture us on all sorts of trendy middle class issues, how they would have felt if they were told who they could or couldn’t sell their property too.

    Has anyone seen Charlie dejectedly walking round Southville the last few evenings looking for Berate posters to appear in people’s windows?

    Let’s hope all the City supporters living in the ward see his anti football club comments and turf him out at next year’s local elections.

  36. Rosso Verde says:

    Why is it a “middle class” issue? Surely only middle class people can afford to go to matches 😉

    I bet plenty of City supporters are wary of the new Stadium plans – look at what happened to Southampton after they moved out of the Dell.

  37. Paul Mizen says:

    The organiser of the Commonwealth games in Manchester said on radio 5 live the other day that the games were of “little or no financial benefit to the city”. I know the World Cup is not the same (i was at the first game of the 1966 World Cup which gives my age away) but Manchester were selling the games as a great financial boost for their city just as BCC is now with the World Cup.

  38. thebristolblogger says:

    The Ball park figure for the council to promote the city as a suitable venue and be part of the England bid is 100k.

    Come on Gary. I appreciate this is the figure officers have given you but it’s transparent nonsense.

    You pay the man leading the bid – Stephen Wray – a six figure salary. If he works March – November on this bid his cost alone is about £80k with on-costs.

    Then there’s the team around him. Let’s say four staff at average salary, that’s a further £80k.

    That’s £160k in wages. Then add in your £100k – assuming your officers haven’t “forgotten” any other costs – and we’re talking £250k minimum to prepare a bid.

    Your officers have given you a figure that’s about 150% awry.

    If we are sucsessful and Bristol is a world cup venue there would be some extra costs as there is for any other event like the Harbour festival etc but the costs are comparatively small especially as it would advertise itself.

    This is wishful thinking. Wray has already said in the Post we would need transport infrastructure. The cost of this is in the millions if not tens of millions.

    You need to set up 3 fan parks and then there’s the policing:

    There would be extra policing costs but the bulk of those could be recovered by the police from the operators.

    Er, you’re leading the bid Gary. You are the operators!

    It’s tue FIFA gave about £100m to the German FA in 2006 but this was spent entirely on stadia not on infrastructure or policing costs.

    If you get change out of £20m – at today’s prices – I’ll be impressed.

  39. Richard says:

    Looking at the comments so far it would probably help us all if aliens did take over the planet. (a) people and quality of life should come before ‘football’ and yet another supermarket. Tesco already dominate our city for sure, and are the inhabitants that sad, (probably are!), that they will sacrifice what could become valuable and much needed housing? All because of some half-arsed view that selling the land to Tesco will facilitate a major victory for footie supporters. Come on let the BCC Chairman put his money, yes his money where his mouth is, if he wants a lasting memorial. Sure, our pitiful council and planners will capitulate in the end. They don’t have to tolerate the consequences and are really a total waste of our planets resources. So… back to the aliens then!

  40. chris hutt says:

    BB “Ultimately this is a question about who runs the city – a crappy supermarket chain or the people we elect.”

    Jeez, that’s a tough call!

  41. paul smith says:

    I wonder which is greatest the number of people who vote in local elections or the number who shop in supermarkets?

  42. chris hutt says:

    We all know the answer to that. Far more people vote with their feet than vote with a ballot paper.

  43. paul smith says:

    I can do do a cross with my right foot

  44. chris hutt says:

    Useful when filling in false ballot papers. The crosses cannot be matched to your handwriting.

  45. BristolDave says:

    There’s definitely a joke in there about Labour Candidates and postal vote fraud.

  46. paul smith says:

    postal votes now require signatures that match the signature on the application form

  47. Chris Millman says:

    “I can do a cross with my right foot”

    That’s something nobody at Ashton Gate can manage. You should be playing!

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  50. Claire says:

    Oh my goodness, what a lot of bickering on this page. I personally am opposed to Tesco taking on the Ashton Gate site not just because it’s Tesco, but because I feel any supermarket in that location would be an unecessary addition. I honestly believe that for those people wishing to shop in supermarkets there is plenty of choice already (Sainsbury’s, Asda, Lidl and Aldi as well as two small Tesco stores on West and North Street). Likewise currently thre is a lot of choice for those wishing to shop in the smaller high street shops (despite what some people subscribing to this site may believe), with the huge variety of both North Street and East Street. I implore you to trust me when I say my diet is neither boring or unvaried yet I find it possible to conduct my weekly shop on either of these two streets… The point is I currently have the choice as does everyone else reading this page, the difference being my choice is likly to be compromised by the addition of Tesco, for those who chose to shop in a supermarket their choice is in no immediate threat.

  51. Pingback: What a difference a day makes! World Cup costs hit £28m « The Bristol Blogger

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