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Independent retailers thrive with no supermarkets

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The Campaign for Rural England (CPRE) has found that independent shops, employment and the countryside all flourish if plans for supermarkets are rejected.

In a report jointly produced with the Plunkett Foundation, researchers found that an area around Saxmundham in East Suffolk prospered when the council rejected planning permission for a superstore in 1997.

The area’s butchers, bakers greengrocers and fish shops have all done very well since the rejection and the number of food shops rose from 300 in 1997 to 370.

“It shows there is a viable alternative to being spoon-fed by the supermarkets,” said Tom Oliver, head of rural policy at the CPRE.

“Local and regional government must support a future for local food suppliers, independent stores and the communities they serve.”


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