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Opposition grows to market plan
3:20pm Wednesday 24th October 2012 in News
OPPOSITION to plans for a 30-stall outdoor market in Corringham has intensified.
More than 19 town centre businesses have voiced objections to the plans being proposed by Outdoor Market Group, a Stanford-le-Hope-based company run by Robert Wong.
A petition has been launched, posters put up in shop windows and the council’s planning department has been sent letters objecting to the application.
Shop-owners claim to have been left in the dark by OMG, with many concerned their businesses will be harmed by a market in Grover Walk.
The opposition group has also raised a number of problems with the application, in particular issues of an admin office and waste collection, with confusion existing over where it will be and therefore where and if traders will have access to toilet facilities.
There will be 24 stalls open to begin with, but the group is inviting residents to come forward with other ideas, meaning up to 30 stalls could be in operation up to six days a week.
OMG argues the market is not going into direct competition with the independent retailers.
But Vicki Seales, who runs Jokers, a 25-year-old store in St John’s Way that sells toys, gifts and general goods, disagrees.
She believes the shop could be out business by Christmas if the market opens in November, saying: “Eveything that is on the list, we actually sell in this shop.
“We have to pay rent and council tax, so we’ll be undercut by the stalls who don’t have to pay that.
“We probably won’t be here after Christmas if it goes through.” Dinesh Amin, who owns One Hour Photo and News in St John’s Way, said: “This town is very small. “It won’t bring more people here. I’m completely against it. Parking is already an issue in the town.”
Emma Keast, who has owned chic gift shop Cranberries in Grover Walk since 2007, is concerned about the plans and would like to see them trialled first: “I’m worried my customers won’t be able to park on market days. I think the town is fine the way it is.”