Verges outside Grantham Tesco store ‘are still an utter disgrace’

Muddy verges outside Tesco, in Harrowby Lane, Grantham.
Muddy verges outside Tesco, in Harrowby Lane, Grantham.
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A councillor has branded muddy verges outside a Tesco store an ‘utter disgrace’.

District and county councillor Linda Wootten says the long-running saga of the unsightly verges outside the Tesco Express store on the corner of Keats Avenue and Harowby Lane needs resolving quickly.

Muddy verges outside Tesco, in Harrowby Lane, Grantham.

Muddy verges outside Tesco, in Harrowby Lane, Grantham.

The store was created on the site a few years ago after the closure of the Cherry Tree pub.

Coun Wootten is calling on Tesco to hold talks to solve the problem, which is largely caused by people parking their vehicles on the verges and also delivery lorries cutting across it and damaging the kerb stones.

Coun Wootten said: “I have spent many hours trying to address the destruction of the verges with the highways manager and Tesco. I even came up with a new way of parking outside of the store which Tesco accepted but, when it came to paying for it, nothing was forthcoming. It’s a possibility that legal action may be taken if the situation can’t be resolved. I can’t believe that Tesco can be proud of the street scene outside their store, let alone the poor residents who have to live with and look at this mess every day.

“Keats Avenue has gone from a pleasant residential street with a quiet pub, to an open-all-hours convenience store with constant vehicle movements and deliveries, due to the lack of planning constraint and consideration for the people who live nearby.”

It has been suggested that the chain uses wasteland next to the store for additional parking. However, Coun Wootten said that Tesco is not interested in buying the land aas it has a ‘long-term lease on the premises where the store is sited’.

Another idea mooted by residents in the area was replacing verges with hard-standing materials. But Coun Wootten said: “There is nothing within the county council budget for such work to be done at the moment. I once again call upon Tesco to come back to the table to see if we can resolve this issue.”

LCC has tried to remedy the issue by placing top soil on the verges, but vehicles have continued to park on them, causing a mess again.

Coun Richard Davies, executive member for highways, said: “Proceedings have been issued by the court seeking an injunction and damages for the costs incurred by the council. We’re now calculating the cost of the repairs that have already been made and the cost of future works, after which these proceedings will be served on Tesco.

“In the meantime, we are writing to Tesco’s head office asking them to pay for the necessary improvements. We thought it sensible to try this before committing to pursuing it through the courts, which could be costly. It’s blatantly unfair for local taxpayers to have to foot the repair bill for damage caused by Tesco’s customers and delivery lorries. We hope Tesco will do the right thing and avoid the need for legal action.”

A Tesco spokesman said: “We always encourage customers and colleagues to park appropriately, and we offer our customers a car park. We are open to working with the council to resolve the issue, and would be interested to hear suggestions they have.”