Whilst a campaign is underway to further boost the already-thriving trade in Penarth Town Centre, the Labour-run Vale of Glamorgan Council is being blamed for failing to promote local shopping elsewhere in the town.
The Vale Council claims to be providing “year round town centre events” to bring in more customers – citing the (cancelled) Picnic Penarth event as an example.
But meanwhile shopkeepers in outlying areas of Penarth say nothing at all is being done to help them.
Retailers on Tennyson Road in the so-called “poets” housing estate of Penarth say the Vale Council, which owns no less than 5 retail units in Tennyson Road, has pulled down the shutters on 3 of them – and is doing absolutely nothing to improve shopping in that area .
Tennyson Road (named after the poet Alfred Lord Tennyson) has a cluster of 7 retail units – with all with easy parking available outside. However of the 7 Tennyson Road shops, 4 of the retail units are owned by the Vale of Glamorgan Council – and 3 of those are shuttered, abandoned and have now been vacant for over 2 years.
Local hairdresser Louise Pedley of Hollywood Hair says that the council’s attitude has been “disgusting” and says it offers no incentives for anyone proposing to set up new retail businesses in places like Tennyson Road.
Louise, whose busy hairdressing salon has been open for two years, says that what’s needed in the area is a little cafe, or a bakery to complement the existing businesses at Tennyson Road and help develop it into a shopping centre which will attract more local customers.
Another PDN commentator said ” Never mind Penarth town – we have a row of shops in Tennyson Rd of which 2 have been closed down for 2 years. It’s a shame Penarth Council don’t encourage businesses over that side of town”. [PDN Note: Penarth Town Council has never discussed shops in Tennyson Road and would probably claim that it doesn’t have any statutory responsibility in this area because it’s a matter for the Vale Council. However Penarth Council has, in the past, supported retail development initiatives like the abortive Penarth Business Improvement District (BiD) – which again was also focussed only on the Town Centre]
The 3 vacant Vale of Glamorgan Council-owned shops – with their dead frontages – do nothing to improve the feel of the little Tennyson Road Shopping Centre.
The shops aren’t even being advertised for sale or rent on the Vale of Glamorgan Council’s register of all the commercial premises that is owns.