Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Who are Tenbury Futures?

The latest issue of the Teme Valley Times is now available from your local stockists, and once again it contains information and ideas provided by Tenbury Futures.

On their website they describe themselves "A Proactive Alliance of Concerned Local Residents and Businesses" and whilst they remain an "organisation" with no identifiable format or leadership, they seem to have decided to take the position of Town Council, Chamber of Trade and Civic Society to name just three local organisations.

Or is it they disagree with the democratically elected organisations so decided they would just ignore them and create sufficient confusion to get their opposing voice heard.

They claim that the "majority" this and the "majority" that, but if you look closely at the figures you will see that in fact what they really mean is the "majority" of the tiny minority who expressed an opinion or answered a closed question.

In their latest questionnaire they have replies from 32 shops, (out of nearly 100) so were the other shops not interested, did they have opinions that didn't meet the criteria, or did they feel that Tenbury Futures didn't have a mandate to be asking the questions, or did the questionnaires only go to the traders who they thought would give the right answers?

The Town Council and other duly elected representatives have been working and lobbying for many years to get the bridge repaired, and yes the closure will be a major inconvenience, but nothing compared to perhaps losing the bridge altogether in the next flood.  If that happened, who would people look to for a solution?  Tenbury Futures or the various Council officials.

I reported back in April that the bridge would have to close for repairs.  Why is it only now six months later that there is a call to postpone the work? If the traders were so unhappy with the plan, why did so few attend the Chamber of Trade AGM, or at least have the subject raised as an agenda item.  Is it perhaps that the chances of the Tesco application being approved is very high, and this is seen by Tenbury Futures (aka the TesNo group) as a way to also postpone the planning decision.

I think many of the ideas presented by Tenbury Futures have merit, but we live in a democracy with systems and procedures, so it's far better to join the establishment and try to change it from the inside than to keep floating ill conceived ideas in the press.  Perhaps, these proactive residents can join some of the existing Tenbury organisations and invigorate them with energy and new ideas.

58 comments:

Anonymous said...

TENBURY FUTURES ARE A BUNCH OF WALLIES

Anonymous said...

Check the Tenbury Futures website to see what they are all about.....The futures bright its green & white.

Anonymous said...

The survey published in the TVT shows a clear majority of the town centre shopkeepers had no say at all in the impending Teme Bridge closure for months. They were only asked about deliveries -after- the decision to close the bridge had been imposed on them by WCC - a fait accompli.

Many are worried that Teme St will turn into an inaccessible cul-de-sac during the period of any bridge closure. Surely all options should be explored before committing embattled local storekeepers to months of quiet trading - especially so in today's financial climate.

Tenbury Futures said...

We summarise the findings of the town centre survey on the Futures blog. Click the link above to see more.

Anonymous said...

Tenbury Futures are Mindless Morons who are only thinking about themselves not the town

Anonymous said...

They do like charging in on their white steed of justice for the poor townsfolk don't they?

They ask the tough questions no one else is prepared to ask, just always a little too late in the day,

And I note they ask questions about the bridge closure on their blog which were asked of them with regards to their bridge ideas, questions which they themselves appeared not to answer !!!!

That said closing the bridge when it is being closed is a bad idea IMHO, would be much better to get the work done September / October time.

Sure closing it at any time will impact the shops and is a bad thing, but why close it in the dead of winter, bad weather, short days, high river, bloody terrible roads all other ways out of town, we're DOOMED, doomed I tell ya.

Here we go again said...

Just like the toilets ...Another Tenbury fiasco in the making.

@WR15 said...

I guess an Autumn closure would have adversely effected the harvest traffic. Lots of farm traffic especially potato trailers seem to use the bridge. Then there is Applefest, then Christmas shopping.

Anonymous said...

mindless morons you say. maybe your the mindless moron. tenbury futures are saying what a bad impact the bridge closure will be. so mr anon you think it won't make an impact? so go on open a shop now and see what happens when the bridge closes and when tesco come in. i can tell you it won't be booming

Anonymous said...

Does the Advertiser say that the Council and the Chamber of Trade have done a deal with Tesco? I did not know that deals were done like this.

@WR15 said...

No Tesco consulted with the Town Council & the Chamber of Trade, and others. Doesn't mean they did a deal. They seem to have ignored what I (& others) said at the meeting I was at.

Tescopoly said...

"Tenbury Futures are Mindless Morons who are only thinking about themselves not the town.."

1. Trying to facilitate the building of a new and improved Teme bridge that would help ensure the future vitality of the town - is that mindless and self-centred?

2. Trying to put forward ideas of improving Tenbury's tourism draw by sensitively and sustainably developing the CM site - is that mindless and self-centred?

3. Trying to help shout louder about local shopkeepers' existing concerns about loss of trade via bridge closure - is that mindless and self-centred?

C'mon Anonymous - give your firmware an upgrade to a 2011 version as opposed to a piece of card with holes from circa 1972..

Anonymous said...

When and where does the Civic Society meet?
How much is it to join?

Rugby fan 72 said...

So by WR15's own admission Tesco ignore concerns of even the local "Friendlies"...

it may have been over looked by those wearing "Tesco-tinted spectacles" that your views mean diddly squat to this organisation - if allowed they will do whatever they want, using the full range of tactics...

I must admit i had to re-read the advertiser's opening paragraph a couple of times....it did at first appear that the "Deal had been done"....once i had re read para 1 and the subsequent paragraph it was claer that we can put it down to just poor journalism...something we should be used to by now from this rag....

It does seem that a significant portion of the Public Realm works are dependant on the monies of whomever develops the CM....

I personally believe that whatever "cunning plan WCC decided on" March/ April is a better time to do the bridge works, even the "WCC experts" must know that using paint and cementous products in sub or near zero temperatures is a non starter...

Inquisitive.... said...

@WR15 you state "No Tesco consulted with the Town Council & the Chamber of Trade, and others. Doesn't mean they did a deal. They seem to have ignored what I (& others) said at the meeting I was at". 1 September 2011 19:47

Can you specify when Tesco consulted with the Chamber of Trade please...I have spoken to 4 members of the CoT today and non of them can recall being consulted at all by Tesco in the past 9 months....

@WR15 said...

Tenbury Advertiser said that Tesco consulted with the Town Council.the Chamber of Trade, and others.

I'm a member of the CofT but not a committee member, so I don't know the answer.

Inquisitive said...

The people i spoke to are....

So this amounts to an unsubstantiated claim being banded around....

OK, as long as that is clear....

Thanks

@WR15 said...

The people i spoke to are....

Sorry, you've lost me.

Inquisitive said...

committee members...

@WR15 said...

best ask the Tenbury Advertiser then.

Milender said...

Tenbury futures are the only people proactively fighting the menace of Tesco,@WR15 sounds increasingly like a trojan horse for the vile, retail behemoth. Can it be true, as I have worked it out, that the WR15 postcode is the last one in the country not to have a Tesco in it (formerly Harrogate who have just sucummbed to Tesco disease)All power and influence to Tenbury Futures who are putting the supine Town Council to shame by their intelligent and imaginative
approach to the whole question of what to do with the Cattle Market site. If Tesco comes to town, Tenbury is finished and an exquisite jewel of old England will be gone. We will not see the loss until it is too late.

@WR15 said...

Is there one in WR14?

Anonymous said...

WR14 3JF
WR14 3LT
WRI4 2QS

All One Stop stores owned by Tesco

Shopaholic said...

Is there really 100 shops in Tenbury?

@WR15 said...

I think there are 114 business premises offering goods or services (but allowing that some are empty and businesses keep starting & stopping) I usually work on 100.

Anonymous said...

Gosh........ I would struggle to name 50 never mind 100.

OaklandsMan said...

The Chamber of Trade has a website - not a bad site - and this shows how many shops there are in Tenbury - there are about 40 shops in Tenbury between the bridge and Bowketts.

Anonymous said...

I see Sainsburys have put in a planning application in nearby Ledbury .
Interesting to see the store will be 30,000sq ft with over 340 parking spaces .Tesco in Tenbury will be 15,000sq ft with only 100 parking spaces .......One word gridlock in Teme Street

Anonymous said...

If Tenbury is so well served with Bowketts, Spar etc and we don't need a Tesco, why will it cause gridlock as no one will use it, because after all Tenbury is so well served with Bowketts, Spar etc.

So we don't need it, & don't want it but if it's there so many people will use it then it will need a big car park....

????????????

Mr. Longbeard. said...

Hmmm,
Large site, hard standing, on site building with toilet facilities, outbuildings, covered areas in need of a new owner.

A new owner who won't threaten to take trade from shops, a new owner who won't generate to much extra traffic, a new owner who could maybe raise the profile of the town.

Anyone got the phone number for Dale farm??

Anonymous said...

In light of recent comments regarding the proposed Tesco store what, if any, consideration has been given to how Tesco's could potentially improve the vast majority of businesses in Tenbury? How many actual shops will be negatively affected? Yes the likes of
Spa and Bowketts will see a reduction in sales, however this equates to only 2/3% of the overall businesses in Tenbury. With a potential increased footfall ALL other businesses should see a positive improvement. Will more people visiting Tenbury improve overall business?? The answer is very clear. To succeed in business you need customers and the more opportunities you have the more likely you are to succeed. Has the proposed Tesco store contributed to the closure of Gwythers ?

Mr. Longbeard. said...

"...Tenbury Futures’ sole objective is to help to ensure that Tenbury has a sustainable and vibrant future as a unique town in which people want to live and visit..."

But only in so far as the retail aspect of town life??

Anonymous said...

Nice to see Tenbury Futures have done some research on keeping Tenbury alive during the Teme Bridge closure .....210k or 4m Come on WCC you can save a fortune .The future of peoples livelihoods are in danger here.

The Bumblebee said...

The Tesco Effect

"...how Tesco's could potentially improve the vast majority of businesses in Tenbury?"

Oh come on, wake up and smell the coffee anonymous.. Tesco want to parachute in a huge [by town standards] A1 superstore.. It'll not only aim to aggressively undercut the town's remaining food shops but also many others including: pet care, hardware, bookshops, newsagents, toys, medicines etc.

Tesco are certainly not looking here so that they can philanthropically give a helping hand the other shops and businesses in the town LOL! Once here they'll soon have town trade sewn up at that end of town. The store will become a one-stop-shop with few punters brave enough to leave their groceries in cars to go off into town to further spend and browse. Add to that they are unlikely to stop at local pubs with cars full of groceries either [thought I'd throw that one in too].

The Chamber of Trade know this and many of it's shopkeeper members clearly fear the aggressive discounting, undercutting and targetting that Tesco are will instigate [and indeed are recorded as doing so in other places such as LLandrindod Wells].

WR15 most likely won't bother to post this though as [despite it being a relevant reply to a previous comment in this thread] it could also be seen as undermining his Tesco bessie mates.

Click my link to learn more..

@WR15 said...

Of course everyone is welcome to their view.

I have visited a number of small Tesco's (about same size as the one proposed) and yes they sell books, the top 50 paperbacks (hardly the sort of thing that people buy from the local book store) yes they sell saucepans & cookware. The shelf was nearly 3ft long.

So it's OK for Spar, Bowketts & one of the Pet Shops to sell newspapers in competition with the newsagents, why not Tesco?

Medicines; Rowlands are a national chain, owned by a German company. (last time I checked) The sort of over the counter medicines Tesco's sell, so do Bowketts. Many local people have their prescribed medicines delivered by the Cleobury Chemist, why?

If Tenbury Futures want to put up posters saying it's a Massive A1 Superstore, then so be it, but by Tesco standards it's a small store and if the lines carried at their other small stores are anything to go by, then this is just more scaremongering.

Why you keep comparing with Llandrindod I don't understand. I visited the town, the Tesco isn't in the Town Centre. The Co-Op is. There is also an Aldi. The size of the town (with it's large council offices) is more like Malvern than Tenbury. All the high street shops appeared to be in use not vacant.

My only direct comparison with before and after don't involve Tesco, but in three Towns near where I have lived or worked I have seen a Major Supermarket arrive, and years later each of those towns in thriving, with little or no vacant shops.

I will say again, this is a planning permission which will be passed if it's valid and turned down if its not.

Tesco aren't my mates, but I feel obliged to keep defending them against so many ridiculous allegations.

Anonymous said...

Why do I think this?


The first reason for refusal is all about size and design. These decisions are subjective. I have felt all along that the design is wrong and the size too large

Your own words WR15 ....so is it too large for Tenbury or not ,please make up your mind.

Anonymous said...

WR15 said "by Tesco standards it's a small store".
But that's not true! By Tesco standards it's actually a large store - and here are the facts to back this up:
Small Tescos are called "One Stop". There are about 600 of these with an average floor area of about 1,500 sq ft - smaller than Tenbury SPAR.
The next size up is called "Tesco Express". This is the commonest type of Tesco, there are about 1,300, with have an average floor area of about 2,200 sq ft - similar to Tenbury SPAR.
Medium Tescos are called "Tesco Metro". There are about 200 of these with an average floor area of around 11,000 sq ft - something like the size of Bowketts and Tenbury SPAR combined.
Large Tescos are called "Superstores" and there are only about 470 of these. This is the category Tenbury Tesco falls into.
There is also an extra-large category, called "Tesco Extra" but these are relatively rare - only about 200 in the UK.
Tesco have about 2,700 stores in the UK. About 600 are bigger than what is planned for Tenbury, the other 2,100 are smaller.
Clearly Tenbury's would be a LARGE Tesco.
This is not an allegation - it is a fact.

@WR15 said...

You are correct. 75% of Tesco stores account for 20% of their floor space whilst 25% account for 80%

@WR15 said...

Yes I still think the store is too large for the site, although I think the design is much improved. I still have some reservations about some minor aspects of the plans.

However, being realistic and with my (limited) understanding of the planning system, I think the balance has tipped in favour of approval. MHDC could still (& might still) refuse, but I think (& once again this is my opinion and I'm no expert) Tesco's are now very likely to win on appeal. This would give MHDC much less opportunity for negotiation and no S106 improvement money.

Anonymous and proud to be said...

WR15 I have been looking at the comments you get on your posts. If you set aside the Tesco related ones there are hardly any. Does the mean when the Tesco issue is resolved, which it will be eventually, you will find something else to blog about as no one will bother with this site. Perhaps one that you can openly show your views. What about 'I love Tesco and sold Tenbury down the river (Teme) by presenting a biased view of peoples opinions'. It not so catchy but you would have to admit pretty accurate.

@WR15 said...

In the last 5 years there have been over 500 posts on the blog so relatively few about Tesco.

Only time will tell who is right about the Future of Tenbury.

My views might differ from yours but more people seem to agree with me than some would have you believe.

The NoTesco & Tenbury Futures blogs are no less biased just on a different side of the fence. I see no reason why I can't state my view.

Anonymous said...

But you always say your not biased WR15 but you are

@WR15 said...

I don't recall saying that.

The Bumblebee said...

Slightly delayed reply..

Then why would a Llandod shopkeeper say the following in a letter to Tenbury Futures last Christmas? A letterheaded copy of this letter was sent to MHDC at the time.

"In the first 3 months they [Tesco] have devastated the local high street to the tune of a 35% to 64% downturn... They are actively targetting the local Boots store [35% to 40% down] and the local Co-Op [formerly Somerfield 65% down]. Most other retail businesses are experiencing between 15% and 30% decline... some 4 months after Tesco opening. The biggest problem has been the reduction in footfall, people are using Tesco as a one-stop shop and not walking or even driving into the old town centre..."

Llandod's a bigger market town but it's clear that the only thing that Tesco have brought them is massively reduced highstreet trade. The shopkeeper adds that the thing that really sticks in his throat is that no-one objected to Tesco in Llandod - they all thought it would benefit the town.. Here's evidence then of Tesco's aggressive targeting of other local businesses, of Tesco creating a 'one stop shop' scenario and customers not wanting to walk [or drive] into the town's centre.

Funny though - it was also my own experience of a town in the East Midlands too where Tesco and Asda managed to neatly close down their high street..

Click my link to learn more..

@WR15 said...

Thanks for the update on Llandrindod, but as I have previously said the Tesco there is not in the town. Also it's a bigger store than is planned for Tenbury, so will carry a far higher range of "comparison lines" If the traders (exc Boots & Coop) have only experienced 15 - 30% downturn in the 2009-10 trading period they are doing very well. Most high streets have seen a 40-60% down turn in the same period due to the economic climate. Of course "I'm biased" but I like to balance out the facts.

Dictator said...

"My views might differ from yours but more people seem to agree with me than some would have you believe."
I couldn't care less about your views and whether you are biased or not but you clearly sensor well written polite articles that you do not agree with. Therefore you are trying and succeeding in presenting a false picture to the people who read this blog. You are biased which is fine but you are being dictatorial in what you do or don't post and your credibility, such as it is, to those who have tried and failed to post, is non existant. Recycle that!

@WR15 said...

There are some things that I am not prepared to publish, but if you publish them on your own blog that you are legally responsible for I am happy to put in a link.

Anonymous said...

"written polite articles that you do not agree with."


What artices WR15 are you not prepared to publish??

@WR15 said...

I have published 3332 comments and declined 696. I have no idea which you are talking about.

Anonymous said...

he won't publish most of anti-tesco coments but ALL pro tesco comments

@WR15 said...

I would be able to publish more of the anti-Tesco comments if people didn't feel the need to embellish them with comments such as "Tesco's are liars" or other potentially actionable remarks.

Also long comments about other towns which have no similarity with Tenbury, in either the size of the town, the size & type of store or it relative location to the town centre.

Anonymous said...

What you tried to say in the long winded reply was...

I AM BIASED

Retail Sales figures said...

Retail sales are roughly the same as last year, not 40-60% down - see link above

@WR15 said...

Overall maybe, but many high street stores are reporting a 40 - 60% downturn in sales.

Statistics, damn them statistics... said...

Individual stores are reporting a loss of sales but not the large chains......

Are there any Archbishops around? or do we not need the brains of one to work out what is happening...

@WR15 said...

Interested to read today that some of the larger stores have brought out their Christmas stock even earlier than usual in a desperate attempt to grab as much Christmas trade as possible. Many stores now making a loss all year with only the Christmas trade returning them to the black overall.

Anonymous said...

"I would be able to publish more of the anti-Tesco comments if people didn't feel the need to embellish them with comments such as "Tesco's are liars" or other potentially actionable remarks."

But you will publish comments claiming that Bowkett's and Spar are running a cartel or have been "ripping people off"!

Your argument is very very flawed, if you are legally responsible for this site you might need to be a bit more careful.

Anonymous said...

Tenbury is a mess. The parking is rubbish, the drains stink, there's no cafes for visitors to have a coffee and a cake at 5pm, there are no real visitor attractions, there aren't enough shops, there aren't enough buses, the buses don't go to the business park, the swimming pool is expensive, the cinema is shut, the school doesn't take you through to age 18,..... the list goes on.
So what is the council doing?
They are closing the bridge and spending half a million pounds on digging up the footpaths and changing the street lights!
Hopeless or what?