Coventry & Warwickshire

Hereford 'saturated' by supermarkets

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Image caption 'All the big boys are in the city', a member of the Chamber of Commerce said

Herefordshire has not had any supermarket planning applications in two years, BBC research has found.

Despite at least 577 stores from the 'big four' chains being approved in the UK, including 46 in the West Midlands, the county has not had any.

A member of Hereford's Chamber of Commerce said he thought it was because the city was "saturated" with supermarkets.

The big four companies are Tesco, Asda, Morrisons and Sainsbury's.

The BBC contacted every UK planning authority to discover how many shops from the companies received permission between 1 November 2008 and 1 November 2010.

The figures were obtained by researchers examining the expansion of the big four across the UK.

Luke Conad said: "Hereford is saturated with supermarkets.

"It's got a big Asda, two big Tescos, a Morrisons, a Co-op and a Sainsbury's.

"All the big boys are there anyway."

He said he and other traders were launching a bid to get shoppers to visit the smaller shops.

A loyalty card scheme, Truffle Herefordshire, which was set up two weeks ago, has attracted just under 2,000 users.

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