The Green Party has challenged the administration to rethink its plans for the city centre, but the Labour administration, backed by the Lib Dems, is clinging on to the stalled deal with Hammersons. The Greens want to see a stronger focus on encouraging local
businesses and shops, providing a wider range of daytime and evening leisure activities and making the city centre a great place to live as well as to work and to visit. But Labour have hit back, defending their plans to demolish existing streets and bring in multinational chain stores.
Cllr Rob Murphy who, alongside Cllr Jillian Creasy, represents the city centre said:
“It’s a bit rich of Labour to criticise the Greens about the state of the City Centre when locally and nationally it is they who have overseen the economic decline of recent years. It was the Green Party who suggested in 2008 that the Sevenstone development needed a plan B. We were ignored and the last 4 years have been wasted, leading to the closure of local shops and businesses and a running sore of empty buildings in the centre of the city centre.”
He continued, “Rather than bending over backwards for big business our council should prioritise supporting the small and medium sized local businesses that are the backbone of Sheffield’s economy.”
Cllr Creasy added, “Studies have shown that for every £10 spent in an independent local shop or service, £25 is generated for the local economy compared to only £14 being generated for every £10 spent in a chain store. Labour plans will throw money at shareholders and tax-avoiding executives, whereas we want the money spent in the City Centre to be recycled into the local economy, benefiting the excellent retailers and services based in Sheffield and the surrounding region.” ENDS
For further information, contact Cllr Jillian Creasy firstname.lastname@example.org
1 – At last Full Council meeting (5th December), the Green councillors sought to amend a Notice of Motion 12 by replacing Labour’s support for Sevenstones with the following clause: “Believes it is time to rethink the future of the city centre and to look away from multinational shopping chains and towards the needs of local shops and businesses, a wider range of entertainment and greater resilience in terms of community cohesion, energy supply and flooding”. For details of the agenda, go to :
2 – Labour issued this press release last week :
News from Sheffield City Council Labour Group
7th December 2012
For Immediate Release
Greens against city centre regeneration
Sheffield Green Party revealed their true colours at this month’s full council meeting. In their amendment to the Labour Party’s business friendly motion they suggest a rethink about the future of the city centre and that we should avoid bringing multinational shopping chains to the city.
This statement proves the Greens are putting ideology before the residents of Sheffield. They are against bringing big high street brands to the Sevenstone development which will give the local economy a much needed boost and bring hundreds of jobs to the city. This completely undermines the city’s plans and aspirations for development and regeneration.
The council is committed to helping small independents stores and start up schemes which can be seen through our work on Chapel Walk. We believe a mix of small independents and big high street names in needed to make the city centre competitive and sustainable.
Councillor Leigh Bramall, cabinet member for Business, Skills and Development said:
“The Greens showed that they are anti-regeneration, anti-development and anti-business in their amendment to full council. We are working hard to regenerate the city centre through projects such as The Moor development and Sevenstone as well as supporting local businesses and start ups. When there are a record number of empty shops in the city centre the Greens are putting ideology before the economy and before local residents.
“Brining multinational retail brands to Sheffield will give the city centre and the local economy a much needed boost and provide hundreds of jobs for local residents. It will also provide a better retail experience for residents and visitors and put Sheffield on a level playing field with other cities. The Greens need to put aside their ideological beliefs and support the regeneration of our city.”
See the New Economics Foundation report “Making the most of every pound that enters your local economy”