Dear Lewisham Council,
I work for Deloitte, and I’d like you to let us build a massive ASDA right opposite the massive Sainsbury’s. The reasons you should do this are manifold:
1) It’s not an environmentally sensitive area. There aren’t lots of fancy trees and shit, so fuck it, right? A new ASDA is going to look really pretty.
2) It will “increase the choice and value of food shopping locally which, complemented by an enhanced range of smaller shops, cafés and services, will cater to the community’s everyday needs”. That’s right. Think about it for a minute. If we build a really big shop full of cheap stuff, loads of other small shops selling more expensive stuff will make loads of cash, right? Totes obvious.
3) What we really need are 230 new flats in the area. Because the trains aren’t crowded enough already in the mornings, amirite?
4) We’d also LOVE to build a car park for 420 cars. But don’t worry, the roads won’t get busier, or more polluted. They’re for MAGIC CARS.
5) If you could ask the local MP to write a lukewarm, slightly hand-wringing letter about this, and make sure the Environment Agency only frets about flooding, that’d be grand too.
6) If you reject our plan, we’ll just keep appealing with a few changes until you have no choice but to accept. If you lose an appeal, your council will have to pay hundreds of thousands in damages. If we lose an appeal – well… We made £840m in profit last year. We can afford to keep doing this. You can’t.
Now where was I?
There have been very few (actually zero) posts here for the last few months. This is due to a very good excuse. Actually two very good excuses. It’s amazing how little time there is to diddle around on the internet when there you are lucky enough to have two tiny babies look after.
Having twins is an amazing experience, but it doesn’t leave much time for leaving opinionated posts about the local area on your (former) favourite local blog. And anyway there are plenty of bland alternatives around these days to keep you all happy :)
I’m also starting to realise that everything I thought about the area before having children has now changed. It’s like entering a bizarre parallel universe. In BabyWorld, Cook went from being an “unnecessary posh Iceland that replaced Sisters & Daughters”, to being my only route to a decent evening meal during the early days of twin care.
Blackheath switched from being the anonymous place where nobody talks to each other, to a thriving local community where everybody knows what everybody else is up to. It’s amazing what an icebreaker pushing a double buggy is. I might start hiring them out.
And this DIY shop becomes the only place that will fix your broken buggy (for free, I might add) on a wet Sunday afternoon.
And there’s so much more I should be asking you. Are we going to end up with a crappy Asda opposite our crappy Sainsbury’s? (Heidi wrote a hedging post about this. Let’s not forget New Labour practically invented cheap housing over massive supermarkets). What about the new bakers? Will I be able to look at that weird apostrophe every morning? What do they think of the Chorleywood Bread Process? Will Boulangerie Jade survive? Or will the curse of India Jane be too much to shake off? Anyway, that’s all for now. I should probably be changing a nappy.