Ruddington village centre shoppers will have slightly less choice from this weekend when our Sainsbury’s Local closes its doors permanently – after just over a decade on Dutton’s Hill.
RUDDINGTON.info first revealed this shock news back in October last year, when it transpired this shop had already been earmarked for closure over 12 months’ earlier – along with up to 40 other Sainsbury’s outlets across the UK. However, that was before the COVID-19 outbreak when it appeared villagers were actually making very good use of the Wilford Road convenience store during the Coronavirus restrictions, as more of us switched to shopping locally. Nevertheless, the supermarket chain has gone ahead with axing our shop as originally planned – shutting it permanently from 4pm this Saturday, February 6th – despite it having another five years to run on its lease.
Whilst not being willing to give a specific reason why they’ve pulled out of Ruddington, a Sainsbury’s spokesperson tells us: “We understand this will be an unsettling time for those affected and we’re supporting them in any way we can. We hope to welcome customers to our other nearby stores, including Keyworth Local and West Bridgford Local on Melton Road.”
There’s speculation the restricted parking at Dutton’s Hill may be partly to blame for the unexpected closure (although the store car park itself has ten spaces), whilst increased online shopping and the new Lidl in Clifton and Aldi in Edwalton won’t have helped the situation. Rather bizarrely the new ‘Sainsbury’s on the Go’ which opened at Ruddington Service Station last summer isn’t even flagged as an alternative for former village Sainsbury’s Local shoppers to use instead!
Chair of Ruddington Village Centre Partnership, Mike Ader, says: “It’s a real shame that Sainsbury’s is going as I realise many of us use it, even if it is only for a ‘top up’, impulse or emergency purchases. However, we still have fabulous local shops in the village which can satisfy many of our needs so I hope everyone will continue to support local Ruddington traders rather than get in their cars and go elsewhere.”
Even during ‘lockdown’, these include essential retailers like the recently refurbished Ruddington Co-Op Supermarket and The Bottle Top as a nearby alternative for beers, wines, spirits, pantry staples and plastic-free fruit and veg.
With still one retail unit remaining at The Courtyard, more shops being built where Barclay & Cook used to be, the former butchers lying empty and Nottingham Building Society now gone, this leaves another retail gap to fill in our village centre, post pandemic. The sign above Reuben Grice’s former premises at 12-14 Wilford Road indicates that these are still up “To Let/May Sell”. Only time will tell what will happen next to this rather famous Ruddington landmark.
Looking on the bright side, maybe the traffic through the notorious village bottleneck may now be able to flow a little more freely for the foreseeable future.