Fears raised over plans for two more new supermarkets

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CONCERNS have been raised over plans to open two new supermarkets in Southsea.

A Tesco could open in Palmerston Road and Morrisons wants to bring a shop to Elm Grove.

Both supermarkets want to sell alcohol from 6am every day and Morrisons wants to sell it until midnight, an hour later than its rival.

Vince Faithfull, chairman of Southsea Association, said his committee had talked about the situation – but realised not much could be done.

He’s concerned that other shops will want to follow suit if Morrisons ends up selling alcohol later than them.

‘We felt we would be trying to wrestle the big boys,’ he said.

‘But there are issues there, and concerns, especially with Morrisons because it would be far too close to the Co-op.

‘There’s already so many other big companies in Southsea now.

‘If you go back two years ago there was only a Co-op.

‘Smaller institutions will be driven out.

‘With Morrisons coming in, if it will sell until midnight then that will no doubt push for others to go from 11pm until midnight.

‘Elm Grove has already got issues with drinkers as it is.

‘It’s unnecessary selling alcohol from 6am.

‘But at the end of the day, it seems like an already-set precedent so you would have to go and revoke other people’s licences and that is not likely to happen.’

Councillor Peter Eddis, who represents St Jude Ward – the area the supermarkets come under – has told the council he is objecting.

‘Where supermarkets open is up to them,’ he said.

‘That is something we can’t get involved in.

‘The alcohol and licensing I do have concerns about.

‘There are far too many places selling alcohol already, but unfortunately The Licensing Act doesn’t let us stop that.

‘I have already put in an objection to both of these plans.

‘They are selling alcohol too early and too late.’

Deputy conservative group leader Cllr Luke Stubbs said: ‘So many supermarkets are open now and they’re just taking trade off each other.

‘I do wonder whether there will be enough trade for these new ones?’