Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Shopping in Marple

One of the strengths of Marple is definitely the number of shops catering for pretty much everything you need - butchers (2), car parts (2), hardware (1), grocers (2), banks (4), delis (3), bakeries (5). There are a few gaps - we could do with a shoe shop, I'm not struck on any of the Chinese takeaways or the men's clothes shops and the only off-licence beyond the supermarkets is a Bargain Booze, but it is a down-to earth suburban location afterall and the British high street is under pressure like never before.

Other than that, if anything, the issue is oversupply. There are four barbers on Stockport Road, two petrol stations and soon to be a third convenience store. This is really poor planning and stretches my faith in the free market.

So, a new Spar opened opposite Rose Hill train station. The guy who runs it seems like a nice bloke. It's what it is - a small Spar. Next door was a large Wine Rack which closed down when Thresher went bust. Now it is to be a convenience store, not a Spar but another branded store selling food, sweets and chocs and milk. I'm not sure who's served best by this, but it must be galling for the people that opened the Spar. The talk on the train tonight is of loyalty to Spar.


Paul S said...

When I was growing up there was a shoe shop/ shoe repair shop run by a bloke called Mr Proctor who had birdsong tourettes (for want of a better description!). He used to terrify me!
There was also a barber with terrible psoriasis.

Josh said...

I've always found the Hawk Green Fryery to be pretty good for Chinese.

Will Stone said...

Hear hear Michael. The sheer luncacy of allowing another convenience store next to another is madness.

Marple has the shoppers, or should I say those with disposable income. A good independent shoe shop perhaps also specialising in children's footwear would be great to see. Also some more unique shops such as those focusing on crafts, stationers, haberdashery etc.

It's also how these shops market themselves. I see so many with poor branding, layout and v.often limited marketing.

In these tricky times people need to work harder. More door to door leafleting, twitter, websites and loyalty cards. Does Marple have a discount card?

I was walking through Edgeley centre and although it is run down it still has all the services such as: bike shop, barbers, craft shop, old-school shoe repairers, estate agents, fashion shops, florists, furniture retailers and more.

Stockport Council need to think on about planning.


MT said...

Shop premises are divided into categories for usage, and I think the new shop still falls into the A1 category, so I doubt the council are interested/aware that we have to similar shops next to each other. As far is poor planning is concerned, to my knowledge, no such thing exists on the high street, if a landlord owns a row of shops and they all open as barbers, why would he care if they all pay the rent, why would the council care if they still get their hideously inflated business rates. Alas the onus is on the new tenant, it is their risk if they choose to open up in an area where over supply exists, they need to have the confidence that they can do things better, it needs to be a calculated risk.

As far as loyalty is concerned, is it naive to think this will exist when people are faced with both shops? I think so. I should imagine what will happen, is that they will try both shops for size and see which fits, maybe one shop will do something better than the other and vice versa so they may end up using both, or maybe one will excel and the other will fail. It’s tough on the high street at present.

Marple town centre definitely has gaps and certainly has room for improvement, if the consumer could plan the high street that they wanted, I’m sure the high street would thrive…now there’s an idea.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with you regarding the shop that's opening up next to the Spar at Rose Hill. I've made my feelings known on the Marple forum. The owners of the Spar and their staff have always been welcoming and it must be awful for them seeing this new shop open up.