Tesco should just get on with it!

I’M really puzzled about the way Tesco operates when it tries to open major new stores.

Sometimes it seems as if their property bosses go out of their way to turn everyone against them – and then spend so long on the application that you end up wondering if they really want to go ahead with the scheme anyway.

Look at Grafton Way in Ipswich. They spent two years preparing a planning application which went before planners in 2010.

It was controversially approved, but was then subject to a legal wrangle that the borough moved to sort out.

But once that was all behind it Tesco went away and re-drew the plans. Then it delayed again.

Now the re-drawn scheme isn’t expected to be decided until next year. If it is given approval and if work does start in mid-2013, the store isn’t likely to be open until mid 2014 – six years after planning started in 2008.

Is the company so relaxed that it couldn’t care when its stores open – or is it trying to wriggle out of a major scheme because it’s struggling in the recession? Actually six years is a short time in comparison with the 13 years Tesco has been battling to get a supermarket in Hadleigh.

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During that time they’ve split the town, and while they were prevaricating the Co-op and Morrisons have leapfrogged over them, meaning that the main plank of their claim (that of retail need) no longer exists!