Mobile phone accessory shop owners on Southend High Street have reacted with horror at the sheer number of Christmas shops that have opened in the run-up to this year’s festive season, and they are appealing to the local council to ‘stop them from ruining the town centre.’
A petition has been submitted in the last few days to town bosses that has been signed by the owners of Fone Bitz and Bobs, Fone Case World, Phone Case World, Fone Case Centre, Phone iBitz and Bobz, Fone Centre, Phone Center, iPhone Case Centre, Mobile Crazy, Fone Stuff and Money Transfer World, The Phone Bits Kiosk, Fone Fone, Phone Phone, Fones Fones and Fones, Cases and Stuff, Phone Crazy, Chargers and Stuff, Money Transfer and Fone Stuff World, Phone Ringdings and Nothing but Nokia – the other 17 mobile accessory shops were not willing to participate in the protest.
A statement has been released to Southend News Network on behalf on the protest group, and it says:
We have noticed that an incredible number of Christmas shops have opened on Southend High Street within the last couple of weeks, and we feel that they have significantly lowered the tone of a shopping street that should be the jewel in Southend’s crown. We have spent a considerable amount of time looking around these so called ‘shops,’ and they are all selling the same items, at the same prices. We found the same 2m piece of gold-tinted tinsel in every single Christmas store, and we have no idea how they can all operate and remain profitable.
Therefore, if the local council do not wind down these dangerous and monotonous pop-up shops with immediate effect, we are concerned that our varied and unique mobile phone accessory outlets will suffer. Many of us have already been forced to sell clothing just to make our phone accessory businesses profitable again.
However, shortly after the petition was submitted to the council, Southend News Network has learned that there are plans in place for The Royals Shopping Centre to be dedicated entirely to shops selling mobile phone accessories and £5 items of clothing. Southend residents spend more than £12bn per year on mobile phone chargers, Frozen phone charms and tablet cases with pictures of Westie Terriers on them, and town bosses are confident that this move will turn The Royals into the top shopping destination in the South East. If the scheme is successful, it is also predicted that these businesses will make up 85% of the retailers on the upcoming Fossett’s Farm development.
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