Monday, March 21, 2005

People in my Ward, (Bearwood in Smethwick) are extremely concerned about the fate of their local shopping centre. Morrisons bought the successful Safeways store as part of their takeover of the Safeways group. Actually, Safeways had been so successful they had managed to force out virtually all of the small grocers and greengrocers in the area. Now Morrisons, having overstretched themselves buying Safeways, have decided to close down their Bearwood store and make the staff redundant, and at the same time close down the central post office located in their store. So, there are unlikely to be many tears shed in Bearwood over the news that Morrisons have had £40m knocked off their profits. Still, their shareholders can comfort themselves with the knowledge that they will only make a profit of about £320 million.

So the people of Bearwood and surrounding areas, together with those traders who have survived amongst the charity shops, building societies and kebab houses, are anxious to ensure a replacement supermarket is found. Personally I have a great deal of sympathy with George Monbiot's cry of Shut Down The Supermarkets! Unfortunately, as people have adapted to supermarket consumerism, I suppose we had better press on and seek an alternative chain to move in to the shell of Morrisons deserted store... and Morrisons can set about ripping the guts out of someone else's community.