Christmas tree business in competition with Wanstead High Street

This week saw the introduction of a Christmas tree selling business on Christ Church Green in Wanstead. While everyone accepts that all councils need to diversify and find new ways to make cash, is this really the most sensible approach?

Businesses along Wanstead High Street are now in direct competition with the council-backed scheme. Businesses that are here 365 days a year, have struggled through the worst economic downturn in 300 years, pay rent and taxes to the council to which they now find themselves competing with.

I don’t know why Labour run Redbridge are so keen to promote ventures that ultimately compete directly with our High Street. It makes no sense. If our local shops lose out to these guys we all lose. Fewer businesses means less tax, less employment and empty stores.

Coming on the back of a new proposal to install a cafe on the same green – which again – will complete directly with the existing cafes, makes no economic sense in the long term. Sure, a quick buck may be made by Redbridge, but at what long term economic cost to the wider community?

This Christmas we encourage Wanstead to support its fantastic independent retailers and the Wanstead Businesses Partnership. Shop local. Stay local. Spend local and help our High Street.

Scott Wilding

Wanstead Liberal Democrats

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