Has anyone else noticed the rate at which Edinburgh is losing our small shops? Very slowly and insidiously the handy wee corner shops are disappearing and are being replaced by charity shops, fast-food outlets and ‘national’ food shops. Where have the butcher, the baker, the fish-shop and the greengrocer gone? Now shoppers have to go to the supermarkets which seem to have appeared everywhere.
Yes, shoppers can get everything under one roof at the supermarket but ‘loose’ veg. fruit and butcher-meat seem to be a thing of the past. People living on their own, or on restricted incomes, do not want or need a bag of this or that, which often go past the sell-by date before the contents are finished. Speaking from personal experience, the Surfers have lost from their home area 3 butcher shops, 2 greengrocers, 2 fishmongers, 2 bakeries, the bank, the post office and the chemist.
Gorgie/Dalry is another area which has lost all the ‘wee shops’ and now the area ‘boasts’ Tesco’s, Sainsbury’s Asda’s, Co-operative Food as well as the popular Aldi and Lidl stores. The big supermarkets now seem to be opening their own style or corner shops – but again they do not offer small packets or loose items. All right for picking up a newspaper, or wrapped sandwiches, crisps or sweets but definitely not suitable for a ‘weekly shop’. Do the supermarkets have an answer or response to this problem.
The ageing population is encouraged to eat sensibly but what if it means a bus journey because not everyone has a car!