Last week I wrote to the South Manchester Reporter's letter page about how I had invited Eric Pickles to come and visit Chorlton, so that he could assess the impact the Mega TESCO in Stretford would have on our shops. Unfortunately his Department have since written to inform me that there was " insufficient grounds for his intervention" and as a result Mr Pickles would not 'call in' the application.
I am deeply disappointed by this decision and do not agree with it. This development will have huge implications for district Centres and independent shops in areas like Chorlton and Whalley Range. Our shops our already under enormous financial pressure and need as much support as possible in these challenging times. I really hope the City Council take note of this decision and make sure they do all they can to ensure that Chorlton and other areas are able to continue to flourish despite this development.
The campaign against the development has at least shown that the majority of people in Chorlton are opposed to yet another supermarket in their area that we don't want another in the district centre. I will continue to work hard alongside my Lib Dem colleagues John Leech MP and Cllrs Ankers, Lewis, Ryan, Bethell and Grant to support Chorlton's independent shops.