Shopping 'Centre' Or Retail Disaster?
2nd June 2010
... Comments

There's a debate in full flow in and around Tunbridge Wells - you may have already joined in.

Following the news that a new wing of the North Farm Industrial Estate will house a John Lewis and new Marks and Spencer, public opinion seems divided as to what this will do to local shopping habits.

There are many that feel such retail parks result in a soulless "clone town" "devoid of charm". Many people are worried that the increased traffic brought in by these stores will put further pressure on an already strained road system through the estate, while others find popping to the retail parks easier than going into town.

What are your thoughts on the increasing size of the retail parks in the Tunbridge Wells area?
Could more to be done to utilise the empty or soon-to-be sites within the town centre?
Will the roads around the existing North Farm estate and new Fountains Retail Park be able to cope with a higher volume of traffic?
And is the introduction of such large shopping names into this part of Tunbridge Wells tied in with the proposed "improvements" to the A21 that have met with such local objection?

Or do you find it easier to shop in retail parks rather than go into the town centre?

Are we looking after our local businesses by letting these developments increase, or do they encourage more peopl to shop in the area, therefore benefitting the local economy as a whole?

Let me know what you think of what's happening to shopping in Tunbridge Wells, by either emailing us at or commenting on this post below - it's very easy and there's no need to register.


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Natelie Fitzroy is a freelance writer and photographer with The Little White Studio.

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