from Nigel Dowdney, c-store manager, Stalham, Norfolk

Sir; A report in the Eastern Daily Press detailed the detrimental effect of the building of a Tesco in Stalham. It focuses on the demise of two shops in nearby Hickling because of loss of trade.
The local pub is taking up the mantle and trying to make a success of the Post Office by combining it with its existing business. I wish it luck, but have to reflect on the sad state of affairs that leads to such desperate measures.
Another report appeared in the Eastern Evening News regarding Kulture Shock, an independent book-shop. It claims it cannot stock the latest Harry Potter book because it cannot compete with the purchasing and below-cost selling tactics of the multiples. Multiples only stock top titles, while a shop such as Kulture Shock has a breathtaking range. But it is losing income from fast sellers because supermarkets are muscling in on the market.
As more independent stores close, consumers face less choice and overall price increases. Multiples increase their prices in areas where they have no competition.
The Localise It campaign we help drive in Norfolk seeks to raise awareness of the dangers to local economies of the stranglehold multiples are achieving.
Independent shops are extremely important to local communities and the economy. Let’s not see them disappear.

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