Tag Archives: ludlow

ROCK’S GREEN — a new shopping mecca?

County planners will shortly hear proposals for a new supermarket and petrol filling station at Rock’s Green, Ludlow.     See planning application (14/04052/SCR) at [1]

PLANNING PROPOSAL: new supermarket and petrol filling station

PLANNING PROPOSAL: new supermarket and petrol filling station

Great news for the town, is what most of us are saying.   At last some proper competition in food- and general retailing!

For more than a decade, Tesco has been the dominant retail force in Ludlow.  With that grip further tightened through Tesco‘s buyout of our two “One Stop” convenience stores.  Ludlow is now just another “Tesco Town”.   And that’s bad for consumers, and needs remedying.

But alas, the usual suspects – the local traders and the chamber of commerce – are spouting off, rallying against these exciting new plans for a retail revival in our disadvantaged rural town.

No businessman should need reminding that we live in a free market economy. Not the place for a protectionist, anti-competitive, anti-choice attitude.

Have a look at the £20 note, guys. Whose face is on it (other than the Queen’s)?  Yes, it’s Adam Smith!   Father of laissez-faire, free market economics. [2]

£20 BANKNOTE:  Adam Smith, "one of the fathers of modern economics"

£20 BANK NOTE: Adam Smith, “one of the fathers of modern economics”

Smith (1723-1790), the leading economist of his time, was famous for his economic policy of “non-interference” by government.  A policy followed, more or less, to this day.  A policy in which the market rules; with minimal taxes, subsidies and regulation.

This town is crying out for retail competition. And if this new store (my money’s on it being a Sainsbury’s) can bring competition to the non-food sector as well – with more choice in clothing and footwear, stationery, gardening, kitchenware and electricals – then all the better.

PHILIP DUNNE: free market economist, or leaden-handed statist?

PHILIP DUNNE: free market champion, or not?

Oh, and someone please have a quiet word with the town MP (and dashing City banker) Philip Dunne.  He’s jumped lately on to this anti-competitive bandwagon.

Yet when Dunne founded Ottakar’s, his own nationwide chain of stores, he knew he too would be going head-to-head against many small independent shops.  Tough, he said to them; that’s the nature of the game. And he was right.

Those businesses that won’t rise to new challenges are swept aside. That’s business.


Yet with his profits banked from selling Ottakar’s, how different Dunne’s tune is today!  Really! What’s good for the goose is good for the gander, Philip!



soldout1The existing 22,000 sq ft Tesco store in Ludlow has been operating at 115% capacity since it opened. With perishable goods, intended for the store-room, left, for want of space, on trolleys in the shop aisles. Quite unacceptable.soldout2

And so often those fast selling lines and special offers are all sold out.  “Sorry Out of Stock. Not available until xx date” say all the shelf notices. Tsk! How annoying!

While Thursday through Sunday, the Tesco car park is often choc-a-bloc. The number of spaces quite inadequate for all the customers using the store. We need another supermarket, pronto!

As for petrol competition, or lack of it, that’s a very sore point for local motorists, and for those passing through.

In the last 10+ years, this town has lost three petrol filling stations (Gravel Hill, Corve Street, Temeside) leaving just one on Foldgate Lane, which obviously realises its monopoly!

SORRY!:  no fuel

SORRY!: no fuel

Have we forgotten the last fuel crisis when tanker drivers were threatening strikes?

Remember the frenzied buying and rationing at the pumps?


Not just inconvenient but in this rural area, downright dangerous, too.

When the country had many more petrol filling stations (PFS), their underground storage tanks served, in times of shortage, as ‘strategic reserves’.    The closure of two thirds of our PFS has introduced further volatility to the pump price.

Previously, PFS were able to play the oil market; stockpiling fuel when the price was low, and so on.  But with so few stations left, that can’t be done. While that price volatility is great for oil speculators, it’s very bad for motorists.  [3]

South Shropshire is already one of the most expensive places in the West Midlands to fill up the car. [4]  A new filling station, operated by a supermarket giant, may well alleviate that.  More good news for Ludlow.


THE THREE STOOGES   [photo credit: Gannett Corp. 2014]

Say No!  to the bullying small traders in the high street (and harp lane!)

Thumbs Up! to a new supermarket & petrol filling station from this household!

To Mr Simon Hoare (supermarket developer) we say:   Bring It On!



[1] http://planningpa.shropshire.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=NBKYMXTD07S00

[2] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adam_Smith

[3] http://larouchepub.com/eiw/public/2004/eirv31n23-20040611/index.html

[4] http://petrolprices.com





TOLLGATE COTTAGE: Grade II Listed. Circa 1850.

Late 2013, controversial plans were submitted for a new petrol filling station in Ludlow. It was to be built next to the pretty little Tollgate Cottage on Bromfield Road.   There was strong local opposition despite an almost total news blackout. But at the eleventh hour, the applicant suddenly withdrew his plans, to great relief.

However, early last month (Feb 2014) those plans were quietly re-submitted. [1] And yet again there’s been a total news blackout! Not a mention in the Journal or the Advertiser!

And our hopeless local politicians are staying mum too! Not a word at all in their election propaganda! Are the four councillor-wannabes already asleep on the job?

The proposed petrol station would be sited on the rustic piece of land between Coronation Avenue and Bromfield Road. Google Street View here: [2]    An attractive entrance to the town, close to the secondary school. It would become an eyesore and a hazard. Moreover, the area floods regularly. Toxic petrochemicals from a filling station would leach into our rivers. Quite the wrong place for it.



The South Shropshire Journal, in its briefest mention last year [2013] said the applicant was Mead House, a pension fund from “the Isle of Skye“.   How mysterious!   Why would a business, so far away, be interested in little old Ludlow?

Well, the mystery is finally solved! And we must ask WHY the Journal and Advertiser – and the clown councillors “representing” us – are so reluctant to reveal the truth!

The secret applicant behind the petrol filling station is Mr David Delves of Churchstoke.    Delves, anyone?    Yup, David Delves is the son of Roy & Ruby Delves of Mead House, Churchstoke! Grandson of the famed Harry Tuffin!

LAND REGISTRY:  revelations

REVELATIONS:    Land Registry

With sales of £68 million a year, Harry Tuffins was in the top 50 independent retailers of petrol and provisions. Then in a shock move 2012, the Delves family, owners of Tuffins since 1955, cashed in. Selling out to the Co-operative for “an undisclosed sum”. Kerr-ching!

However, the Delves have spoken since of their wish to build a new empire. Another chain of petrol stations and convenience stores!   Paul Delves (David’s brother) told The Grocer magazine that they were “looking at a few more sites“, adding that the family wants to “get back into the Top 50 again” ! [3]

MEDIA MYTH: Applicant from Skye

MEDIA MYTH:  the Applicant from Skye?

So now we know who’s behind these contentious plans for a filling station on Bromfield Road Ludlow! Forget that rubbish about mystery bankers from the Isle of Skye.

It’s Tuffins of Churchstoke after all! The Delves have already bought the site at a cost of £560,000. [4]

They must be very confident that the Ludlow planners will nod it all through!


Such a pity we can’t trust the press to inform us of these goings-on. What’s to be gained from keeping us in the dark?! We may well wonder!

UPDATE 03/15  

At last!  More than twelve months after this Application was first submitted, and our controversial Shropshire councillor Andy “Bodders” Boddington has finally come clean; admitting that the Applicants are the Delves family!



Forget that old nonsense about the Applicants being “from the Isle of Skye”!

That was a myth that Bodders and his Press buddies were putting about, to keep us dumbed-down. While the wheels of government in his grubby planning department were greased to ease this one through.

To be exact, the Delves / Tuffins family, live just up the road in Churchstoke, Powys.  That’s Wales, not Scotland!   A fact that Councillor Boddington has known full well for a long while now.

In fact, since March 2014, readers of this blog were fully aware of the Applicants’ true identity – the Delves/Tuffin family.

Since “Bodders” is an avid reader of this blog – and plagiarist of it – we must wonder why he’s been staying schtum for so long!

Does controversial Councillor Boddington have a ‘special relationship’ with the Delves family?  And precisely what form might that take?  Do they do loyalty cards at Tuffins?!  If so, Bodders certainly deserves one, for maintaining such a sustained conspiracy of silence!

What other secrets has old Bodders got up his sleeve?!

FINALLY THE TRUTH OUTS -- 12 months late!

THE TRUTH FINALLY OUT – over 12 months since plans were first submitted!



[1] http://planningpa.shropshire.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=N0L8Y7TDHMJ00

[2] http://goo.gl/maps/SDeXp

[3] http://www.thegrocer.co.uk/companies/harry-tuffins-back-in-business-after-delves-reclaims-former-store/342983.article

[4] http://www.ludlow-eye.com/pfscoronave/Land_Registry_Titles_for_new_petrol_station_Coronation_Avenue_SY8_1DN.pdf