Traders express fears over new Fratton Park Tesco store

WORRIED Andrew Manning
WORRIED Andrew Manning
Campaigners from the Markwells Wood Watch at one of their meetings is 2017 Picture by Emily Mott

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TRADERS have expressed their concerns about how building a new Tesco store at Fratton Park could affect their businesses.

There are a number of independent shops along Fratton Road and down Eastney Road.

Traders fear that building a new Tesco store around the corner from them could see traders choosing to shop elsewhere.

Andrew Manning owns two local businesses – greengrocer Portsmouth Fruit and Flower and Portsmouth Hardware and Pet Supplies, both in Eastney Road.

He said he fears that a new supermarket around the corner could kill his businesses.

‘We don’t need it. We don’t want it at all,’ he said.

‘I have seen what it does to parades of shops.

‘Look at Paulsgrove – they used to have a lot of shops down there but then Tesco North Harbour was built and it killed it.

‘We had it a few years back when they wanted to put Asda on the corner of Locksway Road.

‘Now we have got this to contend with. It’s not going to be good.

‘I have got two businesses here. My belief is it will kill them.

‘They are opening up Tescos all over the place.

‘It’s not good.

‘I will be putting in a petition for people to sign in the shops.

‘This has been going on for years.’

And Stephen Dean owns Bransbury Park Butchers, also in Eastney Road.

He added: ‘We have been through this all before when they wanted to put an Asda down the road.

‘This is different. I think it will go ahead.

‘This will have an impact on us but until it happens we can’t really say how much.

‘It’s the demise of the high street. It’s a worry.

‘It’s convenience at the end of the day.

‘But is there room for another supermarket? I don’t think there is.

‘I don’t know if it will be as successful as they think it will.’

Meanwhile, fans have given their support to the proposals.

Bob Beech of SOS Pompey said: ‘It’s a good move from the outside looking in.

‘If it helps redevelop Fratton Park that’s fantastic.

‘SOS Pompey will be looking at it very closely and I’m looking forward to seeing what the future plans are.

‘We can’t develop Fratton Park overnight. Financially we are a bit strapped at the moment. But it’s a move in the right direction.

‘I think a lot of fans will be completely underwhelmed with it once they see we aren’t going to be creating Wembley stadium in a weekend.

‘The club needs to manage expectations. It can only be a good thing.’

And fan Nigel Tresidder, added: ‘I think it’s fantastic if they can get on and do it.

‘If it’s definitely going to happen and they are going to get this building done the fans are going to see more out of it and I think that’s absolutely fantastic.

‘We would like to have a better ground.

‘If they are going to build it where it is they are going to have to pull a lot of it down and start again.

‘I think all the supporters are going to be very happy with it as well, without a doubt.’

Public consultation events are being held before plans are submitted.

They will run at Fratton Park on Friday, July 5 from 10am until 6pm and on Saturday, July 6 from 10am until 3pm.