South Ham shop owners tell of anger over Morrisons licence bid

The Hammer and Tongs pub, in Old Worting Road

The Hammer and Tongs pub, in Old Worting Road

First published in News
Last updated
by , Reporter

A PETITION campaigning against a licence application to open a Morrisons Local store in South Ham has collected more than 2,000 signatures.

WM Morrison Supermarkets PLC has applied to Basingstoke and Deane Borough for a premises licence to sell alcohol at the former Hammer and Tongs public house in Old Worting Road, South Ham.

If the licence is approved, the Morrisons M Local store will be open seven days a week between 6am and midnight.

But local shop owners have launched a petition calling for the borough council to reject the licence application and have warned that they face closure if plans get the go-ahead.

Husband and wife team, Amarjit and Iqbal Bhuller have owned Bhuller Stores in St Peters Road, in South Ham for 15 years.

Mr Bhuller, 70, told The Gazette: “My wife and I decided to start a petition and we have taken it to residents in Old Worting Road and Salisbury Gardens and said we should do something.

“We don’t a shop there, Morrisons (the supermarket) is just down the road. We are still in business and open but we cannot do anything else, we have got to keep it (the shop) open.”

Wife Iqbal Kaur, 58, added: “It is ruining our life, there are so many shops around here. I have built my business in the community. If their shop opens, ours closes.

“They are killing other peoples businesses and it is not right. They will be selling everything cheaper so I can’t compete.”

A spokesman for Morrisons said: “Our aim with this store is to bring life back to this once prominent site with a store tailored to suit the community it serves and create 20 new jobs in the process.”

“We want to reassure residents that we take our role as a responsible retailer seriously and welcome discussions with the councillors during the licensing hearing later this month.”

The license application will be decided by the licensing sub-committee at Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council on Tuesday.

Comments (11)

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10:12am Thu 15 May 14

JJ38JJ says...

Is competition grounds for an objection? I think not.
Is competition grounds for an objection? I think not. JJ38JJ
  • Score: 22

11:07am Thu 15 May 14

Babyzone says...

Great idea 20 new jobs,affordable goods ect morrisons has my vote..fab idea..bhuller stores are to expensive that we walk to morrisons from southam anyway..
Great idea 20 new jobs,affordable goods ect morrisons has my vote..fab idea..bhuller stores are to expensive that we walk to morrisons from southam anyway.. Babyzone
  • Score: 24

4:01pm Thu 15 May 14

MIss soapbox says...

Yeah great a reasonable priced local shop Bring it on.

Thats what competition is all about is int it??
Yeah great a reasonable priced local shop Bring it on. Thats what competition is all about is int it?? MIss soapbox
  • Score: 17

5:29pm Sat 17 May 14

Mary Cooke says...

With regard to "Morrisons "little" shop" Bhullers shop may have been there for 15 years, serving people well, but there were other owners there for years before him. I am now 60 yrs uold and this shop has been there and served the community well for maybe 55 years at least as I remember it, it was Smiths then. I too would like to join this petition. These little shops work so hard to supply all of those little things that people run out of at stupid times, help save this shop and tell Morrisons to go somewhere else and build their shop. Its time these big boys were said NO to for a change.......Mary Cooke, ex Paddock road.
With regard to "Morrisons "little" shop" Bhullers shop may have been there for 15 years, serving people well, but there were other owners there for years before him. I am now 60 yrs uold and this shop has been there and served the community well for maybe 55 years at least as I remember it, it was Smiths then. I too would like to join this petition. These little shops work so hard to supply all of those little things that people run out of at stupid times, help save this shop and tell Morrisons to go somewhere else and build their shop. Its time these big boys were said NO to for a change.......Mary Cooke, ex Paddock road. Mary Cooke
  • Score: -15

2:50pm Sun 18 May 14

roundabouttown says...

Why isn't this site used for housing? The Hammer & Tongs has been a grotty building for many years now and I can't imagine a new corner shop improving the area. 2 or 3 well designed and planned houses would be a better use of space.

Morrisons can hardly claim there aren't sufficient shops in the area. Lidl is a stones throw from the H&T site, Bhuller stores are round the corner in St Peters Road and the large Morrisons is a walk or short bus or car ride away.

And as for the 20 new jobs that Morrisons would like to create, I wonder how many of them will be zero hour contracts.
Why isn't this site used for housing? The Hammer & Tongs has been a grotty building for many years now and I can't imagine a new corner shop improving the area. 2 or 3 well designed and planned houses would be a better use of space. Morrisons can hardly claim there aren't sufficient shops in the area. Lidl is a stones throw from the H&T site, Bhuller stores are round the corner in St Peters Road and the large Morrisons is a walk or short bus or car ride away. And as for the 20 new jobs that Morrisons would like to create, I wonder how many of them will be zero hour contracts. roundabouttown
  • Score: -9

10:43am Mon 19 May 14

Sam_Walker123456 says...

roundabouttown wrote:
Why isn't this site used for housing? The Hammer & Tongs has been a grotty building for many years now and I can't imagine a new corner shop improving the area. 2 or 3 well designed and planned houses would be a better use of space.

Morrisons can hardly claim there aren't sufficient shops in the area. Lidl is a stones throw from the H&T site, Bhuller stores are round the corner in St Peters Road and the large Morrisons is a walk or short bus or car ride away.

And as for the 20 new jobs that Morrisons would like to create, I wonder how many of them will be zero hour contracts.
None:
'Britain's four biggest supermarkets, Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury's and Morrisons, have all said they do not use zero-hour contracts. Neither do Argos, B&Q, Homebase, John Lewis or Marks & Spencer.
Read more: http://www.theweek.c
o.uk/business/54348/
sports-direct-staff-
are-zero-hour-contra
cts#ixzz329Y4pDrk'
[quote][p][bold]roundabouttown[/bold] wrote: Why isn't this site used for housing? The Hammer & Tongs has been a grotty building for many years now and I can't imagine a new corner shop improving the area. 2 or 3 well designed and planned houses would be a better use of space. Morrisons can hardly claim there aren't sufficient shops in the area. Lidl is a stones throw from the H&T site, Bhuller stores are round the corner in St Peters Road and the large Morrisons is a walk or short bus or car ride away. And as for the 20 new jobs that Morrisons would like to create, I wonder how many of them will be zero hour contracts.[/p][/quote]None: 'Britain's four biggest supermarkets, Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury's and Morrisons, have all said they do not use zero-hour contracts. Neither do Argos, B&Q, Homebase, John Lewis or Marks & Spencer. Read more: http://www.theweek.c o.uk/business/54348/ sports-direct-staff- are-zero-hour-contra cts#ixzz329Y4pDrk' Sam_Walker123456
  • Score: 16

3:47pm Tue 20 May 14

Buster Preciation says...

Is Mr Bhuller angry at the licence application as the headline suggests or the whole idea of a competing business as the rest of the story and his words suggest? Or is he simply grasping at straws?
Is Mr Bhuller angry at the licence application as the headline suggests or the whole idea of a competing business as the rest of the story and his words suggest? Or is he simply grasping at straws? Buster Preciation
  • Score: 2

10:08am Wed 21 May 14

Buster Preciation says...

It seems good sense has prevailed. I wonder if those 'angry' residents who opposed the application will firstly shop there and secondly ever consume alcohol again?
It seems good sense has prevailed. I wonder if those 'angry' residents who opposed the application will firstly shop there and secondly ever consume alcohol again? Buster Preciation
  • Score: 2

10:28am Wed 21 May 14

Babyzone says...

Alcohol is avaliable all around the area..including bhuller stores..people would buy it if morrisons was there or not..
Alcohol is avaliable all around the area..including bhuller stores..people would buy it if morrisons was there or not.. Babyzone
  • Score: 1

2:40pm Wed 21 May 14

Buster Preciation says...

Babyzone wrote:
Alcohol is avaliable all around the area..including bhuller stores..people would buy it if morrisons was there or not..
And ironically the previous use of the site was just to sell alcohol and let people drink it on the premises.
[quote][p][bold]Babyzone[/bold] wrote: Alcohol is avaliable all around the area..including bhuller stores..people would buy it if morrisons was there or not..[/p][/quote]And ironically the previous use of the site was just to sell alcohol and let people drink it on the premises. Buster Preciation
  • Score: 2

5:10pm Wed 21 May 14

robertspet8 says...

roundabouttown says... 'Morrisons can hardly claim there aren't sufficient shops in the area. Lidl is a stones throw from the H&T site, Bhuller stores are round the corner in St Peters Road and the large Morrisons is a walk or short bus or car ride away.'
I don't hear Morrisons making this claim, but they must have done their market research and decided there is room for a Morrisons in the area. And what they will offer in their local store will be different to what is on offer from the other local stores. As always, it will be up to the customers to decide where to spend their money. At least this eyesore will be renovated and brought back into serving the community.
roundabouttown says... 'Morrisons can hardly claim there aren't sufficient shops in the area. Lidl is a stones throw from the H&T site, Bhuller stores are round the corner in St Peters Road and the large Morrisons is a walk or short bus or car ride away.' I don't hear Morrisons making this claim, but they must have done their market research and decided there is room for a Morrisons in the area. And what they will offer in their local store will be different to what is on offer from the other local stores. As always, it will be up to the customers to decide where to spend their money. At least this eyesore will be renovated and brought back into serving the community. robertspet8
  • Score: 3

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