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Protecting Weston's soul...

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What kind of shopper are you? Is online shopping your thing, or do you prefer visiting in person to check out the latest styles or hunt for a bargain? And do you like the free parking and broad sweep of a mall like Cribbs Causeway, or the alleys and side streets of an old-fashioned town centre instead?

For most of us, the answer is ‘a bit of all three, thanks’. We tend to change our shopping habits depending on what we’re looking for, how much time we have, the size of our budget and whether we’re going with friends or on our own.

So it would be a shame to lose one of the options completely, which is why so many local people are worried about the plans for Cribbs to double in size. Local traders say it could suck £39million in lost business out of Weston over the next 4 years, but even the shops in Bristol are worried. We all want Cribbs to thrive, but not by turning the centre of Weston into a desert. And with the town’s economy finally starting to hum, and local jobs growth really picking up, the last thing we need is to stop that hard-won momentum in its tracks. A town without a high street would be pretty soulless, don’t you think?

That’s why I’ve asked the Cabinet Minister Sajid Javid to have a closer look at Cribbs Causeway’s plans, balancing the extra jobs and broader range of shops against the negative impacts on town centres like Weston, Bath or Bristol too. Weston’s economic rebirth mustn’t be derailed, and our voice should be properly heard. And, now the Cabinet Minister has agreed to take a personal look at the decision, we know it will be.


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