PLANS to transform the village of Dorridge appear to have the backing of local residents and businesses following a public consultation which was held recently in the centre of the suburb.
More than 2000 people turned up to the event which outlined proposals to build a Sainsbury’s store in the Forest Court precinct as well as additional shop units and the relocation of the established doctor’s surgery currently located in Avenue Road.
Barbara Charrington is the owner of Karma Beauty, one of the businesses affected by the plans.
She said: “Sainsbury’s have offered to relocate us, preferably in Dorridge. We will take it as it comes.
“Dorridge is dying. This place was buzzing at the weekend. There were families there. But we need a post office.
“It would bring everyone together and it has been requested. Sainsbury’s have actually changed the artist’s impression so it seems like they are listening to the retailers.”
However a resident who lives and works in Dorridge but preferred to remain unnamed added: “Dorridge is a village. It’s not geared up for Sainsbury’s and the building is too big. I feel desperately sorry for the people who live nearby. It will take so much longer to park and it will be difficult for the elderly and mothers with young children. Traffic is the problem. It will cause people to miss appointments at the doctors. ”
Robert Jukes was born and brought up in nearby Knowle and owns The Face hair salon in Dorridge . He said: “As a local boy I think it’s brilliant. Sainsbury’s will be a great landlord. They have said they will do their best to relocate us but the proof is in the pudding. It is a major talking point in the salon but many are horrified by the size of it.
“But the majority of people were positive.”
In nearby Poplar Road which faces the planned development, resident Kath Corbett remained undecided about the plans. “It is meant to be a village. Forest Court is an eyesore anyway but Sainsbury’s is too big. I have lived in Dorridge all my life so i have seen the bread shop, greengrocers and cafe all go. There’s nothing left except for beauty!”
Becky Smith a part time play worker said: “Forest Court is horrible at the moment. I love Sainsbury’s anyway and I think it will bring people in. I think the traffic could be bad at Christmas and on Saturdays but it is certainly needed.”
Sainsbury’s hope to begin the development in early 2010.