Campaigners bid to save closure threatened store

Coun Wayne Daley at the Cramlington Morrisons store at Brockwell Seam which is closing down.'REF 1501158851
Coun Wayne Daley at the Cramlington Morrisons store at Brockwell Seam which is closing down.'REF 1501158851

Campaigners are battling to save a Cramlington supermarket that is under threat of being closed.

Morrisons announced last week that it would be shutting ten stores due to financial performances.

And one of those is the store at the Brockwell Centre in Cramlington, leaving local residents and councillors angry at the proposals.

Blyth Valley MP Ronnie Campbell and leader of Northumberland County Council, Grant Davey have written to Morrisons to urge the company to reconsider the decision.

And an online group set up by ward councillor Wayne Daley to save the store has attracted support from more than 1,580 people.

Coun Daley said: “As the councillor for the area of the Brockwell Centre, this is extremely worrying.

“I will be meeting with the council to see what can be done. If Morrisons does close and if the doctors’ surgery moves, I need to have some confidence that there is a plan in place that the shopping centre doesn’t become run down.

“I have had a number of people been to say they have written to the chief executive of Morrisons to say the decision is wrong, and almost 1,600 people have given their support on the Facebook page.

“The campaign is continuing and the Facebook page is great because we have had so much support in less than a week and will show to Morissons that there is a really clamour from the people to say give it a chance. There is a groundswell of support to keep that store going as an ongoing concern.

“I have requested a meeting with Morrisons, and hopefully with the backing of the county council will get them to agree to that meeting.”

In a letter to councillors, head of Morrison’s corporate affairs, Guy Mason, said: “We have looked extremely carefully at whether the store can be turned around but unfortunately we cannot see a way of making it viable.

“We are consulting with colleagues and unions to reduce the risk of redundancies and we are looking at ways of redeploying colleagues around our business.

“The closure of any store is a difficult decision to make and not one that is being taken lightly.

“Our store colleagues have been notified of this decision and placed on consultation, at risk of redundancy.

“Our priority now is to support them, and a specially appointed team will be working closely with the store to review and discuss the options available.”

Northumberland County Council leader, Coun Grant Davey, said: “We’re currently working with the town’s MP Ronnie Campbell to make a strong case to Morrisons why they’re wrong not to look at the medium to long term economic benefits from increased investment, new jobs and new opportunities created by the council’s focus on developing and supporting the county’s towns.

“The council recognises that we can positively affect the economic opportunities by sharing our services rather than concentrating them in one geographical location and we’re keen to communicate this to Morrisons.

“We’re going to make the case for Cramlington to Morrisons.”