Leamington “not just a pretentious, trendy provincial town”

Left Unity member Roger Grenville also has a letter in this week’s Courier. Text below.

It is good news that 13 new jobs are to be created by the arrival of The Entertainer in the Royal Priors shopping centre, Leamington. One hopes they are all permanent posts and none are zero hours contract-type jobs.
However one has to remember all the jobs that have been lost with the closure of other retail outlets in the town, the latest being Pizza Hut in the Parade. I, for one, will be fascinated to see if any of the other toy shops in Leamington survive very long once The Entertainer gets itself established.
It is also interesting how HMV decided to remain open in the Priors after appearing to be on the point of closure. Could it be that some ‘rent free’ period of occupation was offered to the company to prevent such an importantly positioned site being left empty?
Leamington’s obsession with consumerism with plans for yet another shopping mall at the top of the town is really rather depressing.
Seeing beggars in town reminds us that Leamington is not just a well-heeled, provincial town, filled with too many shops selling non-essential rubbish, well-suited to the needs of the comfortably-off and those who can afford £500,000-plus luxury apartments. Leamington also has a problem of homelessness where few,if any, private landlords are willing to accept people on housing benefit.
Leamington is a town with its very own food bank for those in our community unable to afford to eat at any of the town’s numerous restaurants. Leamington is a town where thousands languish on the council’s housing list while the council sells off its housing stock at boot sale prices. When many of us were children people always used to say how, while many parts of the town were ignored, Northumberland Road was always spotlessly clean with no litter and meticulously manicured grass verges. While that might have changed Leamington remains a town where wealth lives side by side with poverty.

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