Posted by Alan on Friday, 20 March 2015 at 10:36:22
Filed under: Lymm, Site Developments, Business, General, Village centre, Shopping
The proof of the pudding they say is in the eating. So at the end of a crazy week when the media hasn’t always painted the kindest picture of the village I realised I hadn’t seen a single opinion expressed by anyone who had actually shopped at a Netto. So yesterday afternoon on our way to visits friends in Yorkshire we stopped off to visit the Heaton Park store which opened at the end of last year. It is literally attached to a far larger Sainsbury’s so clearly they think they can co-exist. (Sainsburys has a 50% stake in Netto UK). Before arriving we were apprehensive – let’s be honest Netto did not have the greatest brand image before they withdrew from UK in around 2011. But now they are back and it’s not really recognisable as the same store.
You are greeted at the door by a full aisle of fresh produce. We picked up a pineapple for 65p a big bag of easy peel oranges for £1.09 plus a pack of 6 pink lady apples for £1.55. The store has a Premieur Range ( equivalent to the much praised Deluxe range at Lidl ) Cold meats, smoked salmon, fish, mascarpone cheese-cakes and olive oil were among the lines I spotted. But there were plenty of recognised brands too making it easy to stock up on all the basics. A loaf of Warburtons was 95p. The same loaf next door at Sainsburys was £1.30 – figure that out.
Halfway round was a small area that puts one in mind of the IKEA “market hall” , candles, cloths, napkins, small household goods. As a man I always make a point at IKEA of walking straight past but Su was definitely impressed.
They were clearly pushing the in-store bakery – nothing like the smell of fresh bread for the feel-good factor but like Aldi and Lidl there was no deli counter. The total product range - 2,000+ is apparently very similar to the other two big discounters.
Half way round we met the manager – Kenneth Luxhoi (yes he’s Danish) - next to the lego display which is a feature of every store. He had been following the news stories about Lymm with some puzzlement I think and seem pleased that we had come to see for ourselves. He was keen to distinguish between old and new Netto and pointed proudly to the regularly changing spot deals. Then just as we were chatting who should walk in but Netto UK managing director Morten Nielsen, and Sainsbury Business Development Director Helen Buck on a fact finding visit. They joined us to discuss Netto’s plans to expand quickly to 15 stores and win customers with attractive, wide aisled, uncluttered stores.
Would I shop there ? Yes- no problem. Would I buy everything there? – almost certainly not – I shop at Lidl now. Great value and they do have spot deals but in the end you go elsewhere for a little more variety from time to time. Also one or two of the products like the flavoured crispbreads promised more on the pack than they delivered to the tastebuds. I definitely like the prices. Low and simple. One reason I abandoned Sainsburys in Warrington was the endless “buy one -pay over the odds, buy two at a reasonable price -end up wasting one” deals
The whole Netto concept is an experiment for Sainsburys/Netto that may or may not work as they have to break in to a now established and successful discount market.
Will it work for Lymm? In the end it’s the customers who will decide but personally I know more people who wanted a discount store than a more upmarket name and there’s not much wrong with this one. In some ways I feel this kind of store could be more positive for the village centre too. An upmarket “end-to-end” store with a deli, counter and butchers would be far more likely to eat into some of our local village businesses. I have to say I find it hard to see how Lymm can support two Co-ops, a Sainsbury’s local and another larger store – not to mention M&S Simply Food at Poplar (It’s small by the way – not very exciting) but only time will tell. We are in the middle of a major shift in food retailing and this is just another example of it.
Now where’s my Chocolate and Mascarpone Pudding ?
Alan & Su Williams
Ours was a pretty random collection of goods. The ones in the picture came to around £34.50 including a bottle of Prosecco for £5.50 ( well it is Friday ) five pairs of patterned ladies socks £5 and on the right a stag’s head coat hook at £3. (don’t ask) So the other 20 items came to £21 in total.
Tags: netto, lymm
Posted by Neil on Monday, 16 March 2015 at 20:00:00
Filed under: Announcements, Political, Shopping
The identity of a supermarket due to be built in Lymm has been revealed.
Secrecy has surrounded which retailer would take over the Rushgreen Road site but it was revealed as Netto when a sign was put up notifying residents that an application for a licence had been submitted to Warrington Borough Council.
Planning permission has been granted for a store on the site of the former Rushgreen Road service station but residents say they were led to believe the application was for a ‘high-end supermarket’.
They have launched a petition calling on the council to oppose the building of a Netto and to re-consult residents as ‘it is not an upmarket supermarket as promised’.
Cllr Ian Marks, a Liberal Democrat representative for Lymm, said: “The company has been inept in the way the name has leaked out. I cannot believe their PR people intended this.
“I had no idea whatsoever who the supermarket was going to be and Netto was not a company that had even crossed my mind. What is upsetting people is that the original consultation document put out by the developer, Brookhouse, stated that the proposal was for ‘a new high-quality food store in Lymm’.
“As well as meaning a quality design for the building, this was interpreted by most people including myself as meaning an upmarket company. Names such as Waitrose, Booths and M&S were suggested by residents.”
Netto is a Danish discount supermarket which traded in the UK under its own name until it was bought out by ASDA in 2010 before returning in November 2014 in a joint venture with Sainsbury’s.
“Rightly or wrongly Netto is perceived to be a downmarket company and is not what people expected,” said Cllr Marks. It has generated real anger and an online petition to try and have it stopped.”
He said there was a real concern that as Netto is a joint venture with Sainsbury’s, the store in the centre of Lymm, an anchor store that brings footfall to the village centre, is at risk.
Cllr Pam Marks who is chairman of the Parish Council’s Planning Committee added: “Although I am disappointed at the identity of the tenant, under planning law, knowing the name could not have affected our decision to support the application.
“People are saying the store is being built on the greenbelt but this is not true because the greenbelt starts behind this brownfield site.”
Tom Whitehead, town planning manager at Brookhouse, said: “We have been bound by a contract with the retailer to keep the identity quiet. Because the site sits next to a listed building we have to make a particular effort with the design and it will be a high-quality building. We held a public consultation at the time and about 400 people turned up, some of them wanted a Booths or an M&S but there was an equal number of participants who wanted to see a discount store.”
Here are just a few of the reasons residents gave for signing the petition –
Tracey Wilkinson: Lymm residents wanted somewhere local to do a full weeks shopping and Netto does not offer enough choice and doesn't supply food from local producers/farmers. I will continue shopping out of town if this store comes to Lymm. Locals feel ignored and disappointed!
Ian Walkley: We've been miss sold in a very underhand manner, without a 2nd thought to the impact that this will have on the local infrastructure.
Anna Fradgley: I appreciate that we need development in Lymm. I was a bit concerned that the already very busy Rushgreen Road will become busier because of traffic, but we were promised a upmarket store. Turns out we have been 'hoodwinked'. Netto is at the opposite end of the spectrum!!!!! Do you think that we are stupid? How is this going to benefit Lymm residents? I think the M&S at the Moto services will have far more business than Netto ever will! Bad choice.
Rachel Flanagan: Firstly, we do not need another supermarket in our village. The road infrastructure cannot cope with it. Secondly, we have been misled that this was an upmarket supermarket which clearly Netto is not.
Lizzie Clarke: It would be a real shame if Netto opened in Lymm, it isn't what so many of us are hoping for. It isn't what was proposed!
You can find the petition here.
Article courtesy of the Warrington Guardian.
Tags: netto, supertmarket, shopping