Letters: Growth at the expense of small businesses

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How ironic that in your Opinion editorial you talk of small being beautiful, yet the council is intent on building a huge Ikea.

Once again, artificial ‘growth’ at the expense of Sheffield’s small businesses will be the result. More menial jobs, stacking shelves with flimsy chipboard furniture, is not a good enough excuse.

After living in Sheffield, I am now a student in Sweden and can see which route the City is going down – here there are almost no independent shops, duplicate shops of some chains can be found within 100 feet of each other in adjacent malls.

Ahough a few miles from the Baltic and some of the last unspoilt rivers in Europe, there is no fishmonger in a town of 110,000, nor a butcher, nor a greengrocer. Ikea want to build an enormous shop nearby, not satisfied with having one to the north and one just south.

“Mr and Mrs IKEA” as they have been amusingly called in this paper, are offshore residents and so pay almost no tax (a bone of contention among the Swedes) and not satisfied with 27,000 shops worldwide.

When I lived there, Sheffield was a vibrant place. I bought most of my food at Castle Market and had no interest in going to chains at Meadowhell, instead of getting to know local shopkeepers.

Once more, Disneyfication and tourism trounce the locals’ needs for products that aren’t Tesco.

J Taylor

Sweden via Walkley