Tesco was refused an alcohol licence for a proposed Express store, in Callow’s Yard, Castletown, for the second time last month, with Deputy High Bailiff Jayne Hughes, who chaired the licensing court, saying the court was ‘shocked’ by the current ratio of alcohol licences in Castletown to residents.
Tesco, which has said it needs to sell alcohol to be financially viable, has until the end of this week to give notice of an appeal.
Reporter Jackie Turley went to Castletown to ask shoppers whether they wanted to see a Tesco there.
Robert Bardsley, aged 30, of Callow’s Yard, Castletown:
‘I would like to see Tesco in Castletown because it would create more jobs. It would also benefit other businesses in the town, for example they might go to Tesco and then go to a coffee shop as well.
‘I would use it – it would be right on my doorstep!’
When asked why Tesco, as opposed to another shop, would be best to provide these benefits, he said: ‘Tesco is a worldwide chain and we have already got one in Douglas. It would be easier for people from the south to go to Castletown than go to Douglas.’
If Tesco don’t come to Castletown, he said he would like to see ‘something that’s long-standing, good for the south and good for the island, and something that would create more jobs because there’s a lot of people down south just coming out of school with no jobs at all’.
Charlotte Ali, aged 17, of Tynwald Grove, Castletown:
She said she would like to see Tesco open in Castletown: ‘It’s a lot cheaper and there’s more variety.’
Charlotte, who doesn’t drive but can get lifts from her boyfriend to the Douglas store, said: ‘I would definitely use it. It would be easier than travelling to Douglas all the time.’
She comes to Castletown every week to do food shopping, and said she would like to see more clothes shops in the town, and in particular, she would like to see a shop selling Ugg boots.
‘There is only one clothes shop and it is only for older people.’
Sidney Buckler, aged 71, of Farrants Park, Castletown:
‘I would like to see a Tesco possibly but I don’t think we need another outlet for alcohol. There’s plenty of pubs and off-licences already.’
He said he would ‘probably’ shop there if it opened in Callow’s Yard: ‘It’s closer to me than going round the corner.
‘I don’t have anything against Tesco or any of them.’
He said that Castletown ‘needs more shops’, adding: ‘It’s a long time since you could buy a pair of shoes in Castletown.’
Charlotte Allen, aged 23, of Malew Street, Castletown:
‘I think they should have a Tesco here because Shoprite is quite limited. You would have to go somewhere else to get all your shopping.
‘It would be good for the town. It wouldn’t bother me if alcohol was on sale there or not.’
Charlotte, who works at Castletown Health Store, and has a 14-month-old son, said: ‘It would be nice to go out and do your shopping at lunchtime and then go back to work, especially when you’ve got kids.
‘You don’t want to pick them up and drag them to the shops.’
She said that if not a Tesco Express, she would like to see a ‘proper, practical shop’ in its place, adding: ‘It’s all little gift shops around here. You can’t just go out and get what you need. You would have to go to Douglas or Port Erin and if you don’t drive it’s a bit of an inconvenience.’
Brian Harris, aged 70, of Athol Park, Port Erin:
‘I think a Tesco would do harm to local traders.
‘I’m a cynic regarding the big boys. Tesco is Tesco. It would look around the town at what small traders were selling and then stock them and sell them cheaper.
He added: ‘For the sort of thing Tesco sell, if you can’t get what you want from Shoprite and the Co-op there’s something wrong with them quite honestly.’
Brian said he goes to Castletown about once a week ‘to have a look around’, and added: ‘I come here specifically to buy toothpaste because Mr Patel’s chemist is the only [one] in the south that stocks Macleans.’
He said he agreed with the decision of the licensing court that there were enough licensed premises in the town already.
Susan St Maur, aged 57, of Ballastrooan, Colby:
‘I’m dead against it. I don’t think Castletown needs another food outlet and I don’t see where shoppers would park.
‘I don’t see the point when there is the Co-op and Shoprite.’
‘For me Castletown is perfect. Everything is right where I want it. It’s a lovely place.’
When asked whether she would be concerned about another premises selling alcohol in the town, she said: ‘I don’t think any more or less will cut down the problems that already exist here.’
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Sunday 19 May 2013
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