Local traders are essential if town centre is to thrive

Readers' letters | Published:

Hilary Wendt, speaking on behalf of the Green Party, says that new retail units are not needed in Ludlow (January 22).

Ludlow town centre. Photo: Google StreetView.

She says the former Budgens supermarket should be entirely apartments, perhaps with community space.

That’s not a very green deal. People in Ludlow need to shop locally. They need shops that will limit their need to travel to Shrewsbury, Hereford or Kidderminster to buy children’s clothes and other essentials. People need shops which they can journey to by bus, on foot or on a cycle.

We can only achieve that if we have a mixed economy of shops. Ludlow’s town centre thrives on independent traders. Most market towns would look with envy at our lack of empty shops and how quickly they get new occupants.

Ludlow’s town centre only works because we have the right retail mix. If we didn’t have Tesco and Aldi at the edge of the town centre, we wouldn’t get the footfall. Our town centre could have fallen into dereliction as so many have done in recent decades.

Ludlow town centre must work for all our community. That means ordinary shops for people without a lot of money in their pocket, as well as for those who have cash in the bank.

The proposed retail units will provide a boost to Tower Street and Upper Galdeford, an area we might eventually name the Galdeford Quarter or Galdeford Gate. The development will help keep our town centre alive. We need local shops for local people. As well as all those wonderful independent shops that make Ludlow so special.

Councillor Andy Boddington, Ludlow North

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