So farewell then to the Marks & Spencer store in Birkenhead after a long and continuous presence in the town. It may be only one store – but it is hugely symbolic of the state of Birkenhead town centre – and do we mean state !
It’s certainly a fist in the face to Birkenhead First isn’t it? Proving to the Wirral Chamber of Commerce backed initiative ,which aims to make Birkenhead an attractive and vibrant retail and leisure destination, that there’s more needed than litter picks and pop-ups when it comes to the cut-throat world of commerce.
Whilst there have long been rumours that House of Fraser is on the way out -and let’s face it since the demise of Beattie’s it has rapidly gone downhill – it staggers on , but for how long? As far as we’re concerned that would be the final nail in the coffin and then all Birkenhead will be fit for is a set for a remake of ‘Dawn of the Living Dead’ – the zombie movie set in a shopping mall.
As for Birkenhead MP Frank Field “demanding” a meeting with M&S chiefs – that’s the trouble with him , he’s so used to “demanding” and getting his own way with Wirral councillors that when the harsh reality of the business world hits he’s suddenly out of his depth and left wallowing in the poverty of his constituents , all prissy pursed lips and a put upon expression.
Council leader Cllr Phil ‘Power Boy Pip’ Davies is even more delusional and in peak Pollyanna mode is quoted in the Liverpool Echo as saying :
“Good public transport links , £2 all-day parking and plans to re-invigorate the market are positive signs , and the business community ,residents and shoppers are keen to see to see Birkenhead invested in and improved”
But even Pip must know that a headline such as ” Make no mistake … M&S Birkenhead closure is a disaster” in the usually compliant Liverpool Echo means that this is not a good news story.
It’s not a question of running down Birkenhead – it’s already run down or to use Presidential language – it’s a shithole! Time for Pip, Frankenfield and co to wake up and smell the weed wafting down Grange Road.
So spare us the artists’ impressions for fantasy schemes that will never happen , the deceptive , expensive and manipulative wraparound advertising features in Wirral Globe, the press releases about the billions of pounds about to come Birkenhead’s way soon, honest, the cheque’s in the post etc; etc;
If all Wirral Council’s ‘transformers’ can come up with is plans for more car parking charges and a drive-in Maccy D’s whilst transforming their bank balance at our expense and jetting off to Cannes to hawk the tawdry wares that Birkenhead has to ‘offer’ then surely Marksy’s departure is the beginning of the end for the town.
And so we say to the young people of Birkenhead – get an education and GET OUT OF TOWN! Leave the dereliction to the derelicts and those who have been derelict in their duty for decades.