waitrose & neighbours2

The three neglected units in Hall Green on the Stratford Road are to be transformed into a handsome coffee shop. For many years they have been an unproductive eyesore, attracting vandalism.

waitrose  high view estates smallAs we reported earlier, though its next-door neighbour, a popular Waitrose store, had repeatedly offered to buy these properties and make good use of them and/or the site, the landlords – apparently High View Estates – have refused to sell them. We quoted John Read, writing in the Financial Times, who said that government policy for generations has encouraged virtually tax-free investment and speculation in land to the detriment of productive enterprise which is burdened with “multiplicity of taxes”.

Today this good news was given by a Customer Service Assistant at neighbouring Waitrose. Though the store continued to offer to buy these premises they were obviously outbid by a buyer with even longer pockets – Druckers?

Employment opportunities?

waitrose & neighboursWe will present before and after pictures when the new enterprise opens and hope that it will offer a number of jobs for local people – not only during the renovation process, but long-term in staffing and maintaining this new outlet.


Meanwhile, unused commercial and residential properties gradually becoming derelict can still be seen in many parts of the city and offer an opportunity for rehabilitation. Unlike property developers’ large land banks, they don’t appear to be promising speculative ventures, so council intervention – byelaws? –  could help.