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SAD NEWS: Residents upset to see parade of shops in Garston demolished

 Published on: 27th September 2021   |   By: Amneet Kaur   |   Category: Uncategorized

Garston residents have expressed their sadness after seeing the shops in the Gossamers being demolished.

Shop owners were given until April 30 to remove all equipment and stock and have been asked to wait for the newly built shops in York Way to be ready for them to move in.

This is part of the Meriden Regeneration project approved by Watford Borough Council in October 2015 despite protests by residents.

One resident took to social media and said: “This news is sad for me. It may sound silly, but I have many memories with my kids over there when I was taking them to school, when they were little, and we always stopped in the Meriden shops to buy something. It always made them happy when they were young.”

Another resident said: “I shall really miss Meriden Fish Bar and Donald along with all the staff who went out of their way to do great food. Everything was lovely especially with a can-do attitude.”

One more local added: “So sad, when I moved up here the only shop that was open was the sweet shop.”

A Watford Community Housing spokesperson said: “Whilst we appreciate that some local residents were fond of this particular parade of shops, we’re confident that delivering modern, fit-for-purpose premises on York Way will ultimately benefit both the local businesses and the customers that they serve.

“We’ve undertaken this development with a view to improving the quality of local amenities as well as delivering much-needed new homes – and the site of the old shopping parade will be home to a flexicare facility which will provide comfortable homes exclusively for older people.”

The spokesperson added they expect the new shops to be ready in a few months.

We previously reported about the shop owners’ disappointment in finding out they would not be able to move to the new premises immediately after closing the shops in the Gossamers.

A petition was set up in support of the shop owners read: “These businesses do not have the financial capability to absorb more huge losses after those incurred during lockdown and the majority now face the threat of being permanently closed.

“Permanent closure will not only affect the owners of these shops, their employees, and the local economy, but it will also adversely impact the local community who have relied on their services for decades.”

To which, at the time, a spokesperson from Watford Community Housing replied: “Unfortunately, owing to delays in the provision of information about their basic requirements and the execution of necessary legal arrangements, along with additional requests made by some of the retailers, it will not be possible for them to move over to the new site immediately.

“While this is the responsibility of the retailers, we are continuing to work closely with them to support them in moving to the new site as soon as possible.”

Image courtesy of Kevin Barnfield

 

 

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1 Comment

  1. Karen September 29th, 2021, 8:19 am

    I was so sad to see my first flat being knock down,my daughters first school knock down and her first home,such great times

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