East Area Committee to make decision – be there: 7.30pm, Thursday 17th January 2008, St Philips Church, 185 Mill Road

STOP PRESS: The East Area Committee meeting of 17th January will now no longer cover the Tesco application. See most recent news story.

The rest of this message below is maintained below for the sake of archiving the details.

EAC flyerAfter huge delays, the Planning Officer’s reports have been published. Despite the unprecedented numbers of objections, they recommend approval. However, it is the role of the elected Councillors to make the decision. (There are plenty of cases elsewhere that we have documented where Councillors have refused Tesco’s applications, and we urge Councillors here to do the same on Mill Road.)The councillors will be sitting in front of the people who voted them into office as they vote. And representatives from Tesco will be there too. The more of us there on the evening, the more the councillors will be reminded that they are there to represent the interests of their own constituents, not Tesco’s shareholders. Please come if you can.The decision will be made by the East Area Committee on 7.30pm, Thursday 17th January 2008, St Philips Church, 185 Mill Road. Please come and witness the discussion, and show your support against Tesco.Available online is:

Local councillors will vote on approving or rejecting Tesco’s three planning applications at this meeting.

One of the planning applications is for a store extension. Tesco have stated they cannot open the store without this extension, so this planning decision has the power to stop a Tesco opening on Mill Road.

Since October 2007:

  • 1,100 of us have written to the council objecting to these planning applications
  • 5,000 of us have signed a massive No Tesco on Mill Road petition
  • 600 of us marched down Mill Road on that freezing Saturday in November

And now, on Thursday 17th January, it’s decision time. The meeting starts at 7.30pm in the church. We’ll be gathering on the old Wilco site to talk to the media and grab the attention of passers by from 6.45pm onwards.

In the meantime, please write to your Councillors to tell them how you want them to vote on the 17th. You can find their email addresses at: http://www.cambridge.gov.uk/ccm/navigation/about-the-council/councillors/ or they are listed here:

  • Romsey
    • Catherine Smart <chlsmart@cix.co.uk >
    • Sarah Ellis-Miller <sarah.ellis_miller@ntlworld.com>
    • Raj Shah <raj.shah@cambridge.gov.uk>
  • Petersfield:
    • Ben Bradnack <ben.bradnack@cambridge.gov.uk >
    • Kevin Blencowe <kevin.blencowe@cambridge.gov.uk>
    • Lucy Walker <lucy.walker@cambridge.gov.uk>
  • Coleridge:
    • Jeremy Benstead <j.benstead@cfr-uk.co.uk>
    • Lewis Herbert <Lewis.Herbert@cambridge.gov.uk>
    • Tariq Sadiq <tariqsadiq@btinternet.com>
  • Abbey:
    • Caroline Hart <caroline.hart@cambridge.gov.uk>
    • Miriam Lynn <miriam.lynn@cambridge.gov.uk>
    • John Durrant <john.durrant@cambridge.gov.uk>

Tell them to:

  • Pay attention to the planning objections made by the No Mill Road Tesco campaign and individuals about concerns that Tesco have no suitable place to make their deliveries, road safety, waste disposal, the removal of 18 parking spaces at the rear of the site and on Sedgewick street and other issues detailed at http://www.nomillroadtesco.org/planning-applications/grounds-for-objection/
  • The vitality and viability of Mill Road is a priority of the council’s own local plan for the area. Voting for Tesco goes against the council’s own plans for the future of the last remaining area in Cambridge where independent stores have not been forced out by national and multinational chains.
  • Councillors need to have the courage to listen to the people who put them in their seats, including you – the 5,000 signatures on the petition and the hundreds of written objections to the council and the march in opposition to a Tesco store on Mill Road are signs of local democracy in action. Councillors have listened to their constituents in other areas of the UK and stood up to Tesco, we hope our councillors have the confidence to do the same.

This ‘Dispatches’ documentary shown on Channel 4 gives some idea of how Tesco’s have managed to steamroll over the planning process in other ares in the UK:

And please sign up to the announcements e-mail list on if you haven’t done so already.

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