Green Party Mayoral candidate Sian Berry has been meeting with shoppers and traders in Newham’s Queen’s Market this afternoon as part of her campaign to highlight the risks local traders and smaller retailers face from shopping developments and supermarkets.
Echoing the current template for increasing levels of affordable housing in the capital Ms Berry has pledged to require all new developments to make at least half their floor space available to small businesses at affordable rents if she’s elected in May.
Speaking earlier today Ms Berry said "It is not surprising London has lost more than 7,000 individual or family owned shops in the past six years when 51 new supermarkets and shopping centres have been approved by the Mayor. Unless the Mayor and local authorities recognize fully the value of keeping independent shops and local services on high streets, they will continue to disappear and be replaced by supermarket chains, estate agents, phone and pound shops"
The party argues that preserving local shopping facilities is a key component to creating a greener city where people have less need to travel. Ms Berry "Once the small independent shops and local services disappear from our high streets, local residents often have to travel further to shopping malls, putting further strain on public transport and over-congested roads".