A community transport charity is offering support to vulnerable and isolated shoppers following news that Newhaven’s last town centre supermarket is set to close.
The Co-operative Food store in Newhaven Square will shut its doors for the final time on February 24, before opening a new store in Fort Road the following day (February 25).
The closure has caused concern for vulnerable residents in the town centre, who now face a daunting journey to their nearest supermarket.
As a result, CTLA is urging vulnerable or isolated shoppers to make contact and ask about its 4-Towns service, which offers access to other supermarkets, including Sainsburys and Morrisons.
CTLA minibuses are available for anyone who is unable to access public transport to go shopping, and currently helps hundreds of passengers continue to live independently.
The 4-Towns bus is run with support from the town councils of the Haven’s area and the low-cost return fares and friendly drivers makes it a lifeline for the community.
CTLA is the only community transport charity of its kind in the Haven’s area and has a travel club and group booking service, on top of the dial-a-ride buses. For more details, visit www.ctla.org.uk or call the office on 01273 517332.
Maria Caulfield MP has also pledged her support to those affected by the closure. She said: “While a Co-op will remain in the town, it is obviously worrying news for the town centre itself.
“As someone who is committed to the regeneration of Newhaven, and welcomed the recent positive news surrounding the future of the Newhaven-Dieppe ferry link, this is obviously a concern.
“I have already been in contact with the Co-op and Lewes District Council and am happy to work with any interested parties, such as the Chamber of Commerce, to encourage businesses to take on the site.
“Newhaven is a place with such great potential that it would be a shame to see this site lay vacant, with the impact that could have on other traders. I will continue to do all I can to support the town.”
A Lewes District Council spokesperson said: “The good news for Newhaven town centre is that it will form part of the Enterprise Zone for the town. It’s unusual for a town centre to be included in an Enterprise Zone, but in this case, it has been included because we think there are opportunities to regenerate and improve the town centre.”
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