Fears raised over mini supermarket plans for Preston

The Guild Merchant on Tag Lane, Preston

The Guild Merchant on Tag Lane, Preston

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A petition has been launched against plans for a mini supermarket in part of Preston.

A Sainsbury’s Local could open in the car park of the Guild Merchant in Tag Lane, Ingol, if an application is given the green light.

But a call has been made to “save our community shops”, with fears another store could take “local services and jobs away from the local community”.

Abid Kadva, director of Hillcrest Ingol Services, said he had not set up the petition, but was concerned about another shop in an “already saturated competition area”.

He said: “Too many shops within walking distance is never good, especially with the likes of Sainsbury’s, albeit a small shop, it’s going to add to the competing area.”
But a Sainsbury’s spokesman said the organisation believed a Sainsbury’s Local would benefit people living in the Tag Lane area, “giving them a convenient place to shop, on their doorsteps”.

He said: “Our experience of opening other stores shows that when we open a convenience store, other local traders benefit from the extra footfall and customers.

“Our store would bring 20 to 25 jobs, which would predominantly go to people living in the local area.

“We operate a Think 25 policy, where all our staff are trained to not serve alcohol to anyone under the age of 25, or to anyone who appears to be buying for someone under that age.

“We always work closely with the local community, and the store would nominate a local charity, for which it would fundraise and have close links with. We also run the Active Kids scheme, which helps invest in sporting equipment for local groups and schools, and since 2005, Lancashire has benefitted from £1,807,668 from this scheme.”

The pub will continue to operate.