from Tony Hurren, former editor, Convenience Store, Chingford

SIR; re the recent letters about an independent retailer lobby. In the 1950s, 60s and 70s the National Grocers’ Federation provided a personal service to every member if it were required. Indeed, it would take issue with wholesalers, manufacturers and any organisation it felt was operating against its members’ interests.

ACS has often said it wants to court standalone independents but, to represent that sector meaningfully, it would have to support it - in court if necessary - when independents in specific areas are opposing a multiple wishing to open a c-store (and that’s just one isolated example).

ACS would have to back its small independent members against wholesalers, manufacturers, rogue salespeople and so on if it was felt they were being unfairly treated. It would need to support them individually as and when required. If ACS were honest with itself, it would admit that it isn’t doing so now and is unlikely to do so in the future.