Why are planners allowing another Tesco?
REGARDING your recent series of articles "What's Wrong with Bristol?" I was disappointed to read on a property website that the Fellowship pub on the junction of Toronto Road and Filton Avenue is to be turned into a Tesco.
The local shopkeepers in the area are only just about coping with the loss of business to the present large Co-Op store on Filton Avenue that will be almost right next to the new Tesco in the old Fellowship; and I am somewhat bemused to follow the logic of the council planners in allowing a Tesco development there.
The council bangs on about protecting small high street shops and then allows this to happen – setting two commercial giants against each other, as next-door neighbours, and also finishing off the area for small shop traders.
I also understand that if Bristol Rovers Football Club have their way the Memorial Ground, 15 minutes' walk from the new Fellowship Tesco, will be sold to be turned into a huge Tesco.
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It is my understanding that the Memorial Ground was set up by public subscription to be used as a sport facility for the use of the people of Bristol in memory and "Memorial" to the fallen forces personnel of the First and Second World Wars, presumably extending to memory and memoriam of those fallen in more recent wars.
I could understand why Bristol City Council, who now administer the Memorial Ground, would lend the ground to Bristol Rovers; as their Eastville ground burned down, their move to Bath did not work out and the presumed insurance money from the Eastville ground fire no longer seems to be available to set up a ground again.
But in allowing the selling off of the Memorial Ground by Bristol Rovers to buy a new ground at UWE, especially to Tesco or any other company or interest, is not only hugely disrespectful to our fallen Armed Forces, it is also hugely disrespectful to the people of Bristol who should be able to enjoy the facilities of the Memorial Ground in perpetual memory of the brave and often tragically young fallen forces; who bought our freedom at the ultimate price of their lives, especially from the Nazis. And it will destroy small business and choice in a wide area.
Bristol Rovers are a business, and I hope a successful business, but not at the cost of flogging off the public war memorial that the Memorial Ground obviously is – the clue is in the name – with the support and compliance of Bristol City Council.
Perhaps the present council is selling off everything possible before an independent mayor can be elected to have a good look through the city's financial books and council decisions of the last 20 or 30 years, when there may be the blood on the council carpet.
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