The owner, John Gannaway, spoke to the Scene of its closure.
‘Our lease is up for renewal, but what with the new Sainsbury’s and a proposed second supermarket where the car-park is along Westridge, we thought that it was not worth the competition. We are really sad by this, and thank all our loyal customers for their support. We are aiming to focus on our shop in Bitterne, but this closure is a real blow to us’.
Other shops too are beginning to feel the pressure as the Sainsbury’s building starts to take shape. Longs, a second greengrocer’s, is preparing for the worst.
Andy Jackson of Longs Greengrocer’s said ‘It can’t be a good thing for us. It will certainly have a big knock on effect. Until it actually happens, you can’t make any guarantees as to whether it will be the end or not’.
We are really sad by this, and thank all our loyal customers for their support.John GannawayOwner
The new Sainsbury’s will reportedly provide over 400 jobs for locals and help boost the economy, although concerns are being raised over the capability of Portswood’s infrastructure to cope, especially after the road havoc the temporary traffic lights brought to the surrounding roads whilst construction was under way.
A spokesman for Sainsbury’s said ‘Sainsbury’s investment in Portswood will not only enhance the overall retail offer of the district centre, it will also help keep people shopping locally. Our new store will retain and attract shoppers who currently travel elsewhere for greater main food shopping choice’.
Not everyone is so negative about the opening of the 50,000 square feet of superstore, and some welcome the arrival of the big chain.
Dhanesh Patel, a local of Southampton said: ‘If these local traders can’t cope with a bit of competition then maybe their worth doesn’t really extend beyond the novelty of being a “local” trader in the first place. The amount of jobs somewhere like Sainsbury’s creates in comparison is beneficial in the long term’.
With the opening date set for Spring this year, maybe only time will tell what further impacts the supermarket will have on Portswood.