I did a really fun show last night at the Shelford Feast - a fund-raising festival just outside Cambridge. While I was there I noticed posters all over the place saying "Stop Hanley Grange" and I learnt that Hanley Grange was a planned "eco-town". As an environmentally concerned individual my knee-jerk reaction was to assume it was NIMBY*-ist reactionism. But then I got chatting to a local resident who told me the main reason people object to the eco-town is because the main investorr behind it is ... Tesco.
...yes Tesco, one of the least socially responsible companies in the country. A company that spends a fortune every year avoiding paying tax - for schools and hospitals and services which they and their employees use - through dodgy overseas trading. A company that still sells intensively farmed chicken and eggs despite many major retailers switching to free-range on the back of consumer campaigns. A company that is notorious for forcing smaller family-run businesses off the high streets. Surely it's more than a little obvious that Tesco cannot be trusted with this sort of project. When I hear that environmental groups are being given the chance to manage the development of eco-towns I will be right behind the idea, but for now I agree with the people of Shelford!
*Not In My Back Yard