Concerns over shop takeover in St Albans

PUBLISHED: 12:00 30 January 2017

The Co-operative Food

The Co-operative Food

Archant

A group of residents are upset that their local food shop is being taken over by another retailer.

The Co-operative Food store in New Greens, High Oaks, St Albans is being sold to convenience retailer Martin McColl.

Sionaidh Craigen, who lives in Cavan Drive, is one of the New Greens residents who is concerned the change will mean a smaller variety of groceries at a higher price.

She said: “The Co-op is not just a business, it is about community. I know a lot of people on the estate and everybody’s furious.

“We’re also cross about not being informed. It’ll just be another chain.

“The newsagent has worked very hard to build it up and get more and more bits and pieces in. For the area that’s the only general store that really stocks different things; it’s quite a big area and there’s lots of elderly people.

“We’ve been told that there will be less of a variety of stuff.”

A McColl’s Retail Group spokesman said: “We now operate over 1,000 convenience stores across the UK and we have a long history and a proven track record of successfully integrating convenience stores into our estate.

“Whilst we are yet to make final decisions on the specific operations of the store, we would like to reassure customers and local residents that McColl’s will continue to provide a trusted and valuable community service in New Greens.

“We pride ourselves on our local community focus, offering a full range of amenities and neighbourhood services at competitive prices.

“We will continue to offer quality fresh vegetables, milk and chilled foods, alongside a full range of important daily products, providing customers with excellent value for money.

“We are also very excited by the prospect of the current employees joining us from the Co-op. As a business, we offer superb career opportunities with excellent training, and we look forward to welcoming our new colleagues to the McColl’s team.”

A Co-op spokesperson said: “I can confirm that our New Greens store will be sold. It will continue to trade as a convenience store and colleagues will TUPE transfer, resulting in no planned redundancies.

“The Co-op is moving forward with a clear purpose and momentum and, while this often involves the opening of new stores, sometimes we have to make difficult decisions.

“The decision to sell any store is taken after careful consideration and with great reluctance. It is no way a reflection on the hard work and commitment of colleagues. And, we would like to thank the community for its support over the years.”

Sionaidh has started a petition to save the Co-op, at https://www.change.org/p/claire-slater-save-new-greens-co-op-st-albans?recruiter=54453702&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=share_for_starters_page&utm_term=des-lg-no_src-no_msg

More news stories

A major St Albans business is putting aside money to stockpile food in case of a no-deal Brexit.

07:41

The decision on whether to allow stables to be built on a community meadow in St Albans has been deferred by the council’s planning referrals committee.

Yesterday, 17:00

A teenager who painted an iconic St Albans landmark has created popular Christmas cards of the designs.

Yesterday, 12:00

Personal debt levels in Harpenden rose by 11 per cent in the three months leading up to October.

CountryPhile

Recently we, as a family (minus two of the kids), visited The Lodge RSPB reserve in Sandy, Bedfordshire. I had never been before, which is perhaps amiss of me as a birdwatcher as it is the headquarters of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds or RSPB and only 45 minutes drive from home.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the The Herts Advertiser e-edition E-edition
Zoo Watch CountryPhile

Newsletter Sign Up

Herts Advertiser weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read stories

Show Job Lists

Herts Most Wanted Herts Business Awards