There has been a lot of strong public feeling about the news that ‘the co-op’ were planning on opening a new food store on a site currently occupied by The Eagle Public House and its car park, in Galleywood.
Please be aware that this proposal has not been made by your local co-operative, Chelmsford Star, which owns the co-op food shop on Barnard Road. Chelmsford Star is an entirely independent co-operative that solely operates in Essex, and it has owned a popular convenience store in Galleywood since 1935.
The proposed store is one that would be owned by The Co-op Group, a larger co-operative society with a headoffice in Manchester. Whilst many of the ideals surrounding the co-op model are shared, ultimately this is a business new to Galleywood, and one that would be in direct competition with our store on Barnard Road. To put it simply, assuming both businesses are one and the same because of the word ‘co-op’ is the same as assuming Pizza Express and Dominoes Pizza are the same business because of the word ‘pizza’.
It should be known that purchases made in all Chelmsford Star’s stores – including Barnard Road – strongly benefit local groups and the local economy through a number of award winning initiatives. This has most recently been valued at a level equivalent to a 33p investment in every £1 spent in our shops. We’re only a small business, but we do a lot of good work across Essex.
Chelmsford Star has been supporting the Galleywood community for decades, from Easter Egg Hunts to litter-picking, donations to the schools and to the Heritage Centre, working with the Parish Council and local charities, providing lunches for the elderly and installing emergency defibrillators. We will continue this support, even after the proposed site is built, but the amount we can give is directly linked to the success of our society. That’s how all co-ops work, whether you are based in Chelmsford or 240 miles away in Manchester.
Please remember that Chelmsford Star Co-op, and our local Barnard Road shop, have absolutely no connection to the proposed new Co-op Group store.
For more information, call Chelmsford Star on 0800 2540404