Anti-Woolworths group dares poll

THE debate continues: Does Mullumbimby want a Woolworths store?

Mullumbimby Forum is convinced it doesn’t and has struck another blow in its campaign to have the retailer reconsider its plans.

The Forum believes most people in the town are against the development and has repeated its call in national newspapers for Woolies to jointly fund a poll of residents.

This time the Forum has said it would concede if even 40 per cent of community respondents vote in favour of the proposal.

The Forum is confident of support for its cause.

“We are holding more than 1000 signed letters from residents who oppose the supermarket, and our own polling indicates the majority stands against Woolworths,” the Forum said.

In February, Woolworths refused to be goaded into holding such a poll.

“We did research on demand for a supermarket in Mullumbimby and the region around it,” a Woolworths spokesperson said at the time.

“We found there was very strong demand.”

Shoppers could ‘vote with their feet’, and choose to shop elsewhere if they wished, he said.

“We believe in choice.”

Several recent letters to a Byron Shire newspaper came out strongly in support of the proposal.

People claiming to have lived in Mullum for decades said they were desperate for such a retailer, adding they believed it would create jobs and keep shoppers in the town.

Woolworths is holding its line.

“The existing supermarket is simply no longer big enough to service the needs of customers or provide adequate facilities for staff,” community relations manager, Simon Berger, told The Northern Star.

“We have had feedback from many locals who support Woolworths, including many who regularly do their shopping outside Mullumbimby.

“By providing choice locally, we will help keep expenditure within Mullumbimby and benefit many local small businesses, including specialty shops.”

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