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Call for vacant shops to be filled

PUBLISHED: 14:27 25 February 2002 | UPDATED: 11:26 03 March 2010

ANGRY traders on an Ipswich shopping parade say two boarded up sites are making the place look run-down.

Store keepers and customers are today calling on owners Ipswich Borough Council to pull out all the stops and find a tenant to fill the two premises on Ulster Avenue.

ANGRY traders on an Ipswich shopping parade say two boarded up sites are making the place look run-down.

Store keepers and customers are today calling on owners Ipswich Borough Council to pull out all the stops and find a tenant to fill the two premises on Ulster Avenue.

The two shops – a former butchers and bakers – have been empty for some time and owners Ipswich Borough Council are no where nearer to finding a tenant.

Keith Harvey, of Whitehouse Takeaway, which has traded for 23 years, said: "The butchers has closed at last five years and the baker's shop about 18 months.

"It is just two long. It is disgusting how they have been left. They haven't cleaned them up since they have been empty.

"It doesn't help because people see it and it looks like a slum area. Having a chemist here would be ideal"

Paul Emmett, of Ulster Avenue News, said: "Residents want the shops open. It would make the area a bit more appealing.

"They have been closed for a while now and it is such a shame. It is real community here and opening the shops would also bring more people into the area.

"If we had a charity shop and they paid half rent at least it the buildings are not empty."

Brenda Smith, 73, of Kerry Avenue, who has lived on the estate for 52 years, said: "It would be lovely if there was a chemist here and there's also lots of people with young children who it would use it."

Her friend Eve Rees, 80, also of Kerry Avenue, agreed: "They should open the shops up," she said.

"Filling them would mean extra trade for everybody."

A Borough Council spokesman said: "We do own a number of commercial properties in Ulster Avenue and while some are currently trading these two shops have been empty for some time.

"We are aware that some refurbishment is needed and we are happy to discuss these and other needs of prospective tenants.

"We obviously want to see new businesses set up here and anyone interested can ring our Property Services section on 432201 for more information. We will happy to negotiate favorable terms"

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