Brownhills Tesco: Access denied

So… what was the thinking behind this, then? Image supplied by good mate Howmuch?

Shopping giant Tesco, fresh from expecting the residents of Brownhills to get excited over the fact that they have painted their store and fixed a few leaks for the first time in nearly two decades, seem to be intent on creating their own little retail island. The people behind the ‘Refresh’ (a mere turd polish of an ageing, current retail shed executed at the expense of a completely new store) have, for some reason, decided to block off the pedestrian access to the car park that formerly existed from the steps at the top of Ravens Court.

Where the hedge in the above picture looks uncut, there used to be a paved gap, and pedestrians could cross the car park here in relative safety using the refuges provided. Sadly, no more, and I have no idea why.

Lots of money has been spent on new signage, benches (soon to be removed due to ASB, you watch) and wooden cladding to make this hideous edifice look reasonable. Sadly, none could be found for bike stands, and the site still has no bicycle parking. The range instore, clearly tailored to what they percieve as the local market conditions, is still woefully limited.

Tesco were planning to build a brand new store on this spot – but abandoned their plans after hitting choppy commercial waters, opting to tart up their existing premises, much to the delight of Brownhills Barry, who seems to be something of a fan.

Thanks to reader and top mate of the blog [Howmuch?] for snapping this and sending it in…

Added Wednesday, 1st August 2012, 10:30pm:

Thanks to a number of readers – Vickie Heydon-Matterface, Trevor Bond, Ian Carr and others who contacted me to say the path was back open. Cheers. I’m inclined to think it was an oversight, but you never know.

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10 Responses to Brownhills Tesco: Access denied

  1. warren parry says:

    May i add that the fascia which Tesco’s have had fitted is poorly finished. if you look at the wood you will notice splinters and rough cut ends everywhere! the trolley bays will soon look worse than the ones which they have removed.
    Its a sad statement from Tesco’s on how they feel about Brownhills. We are not even worthy of full face lift, we get a sticking plaster instead.
    i no longer shop in Brownhills, we travel to Morrison’s in Burntwood, a far superior experience.

  2. stymaster says:

    So, they’ve actually *spent money* removing that route?


    It is of course, a bit of purposeful design. Discourage walking, encourage driving to Tesco, to the exclusion of others.

  3. JeepBoy says:

    Their piss-poor range “clearly tailored to what they percieve as the local market conditions” went awry somewhat when they thought the good burghers of Brownhills craved an “Olive Bar” – gratifying to see last night the clearance section had two shelves rammed full of reduced-price olives !! Well done Tesco !!!!

  4. ian carr says:

    the blocked path has now been re-opened yesterday i noticed so thats good! as for the revamp the benches on the one side have split wood already due to shody work and did any one catch the buffoons direrecting the parking over the weekend? they where very funny! why a is it that we now need parking zones ?what ever they are!

  5. colin .s says:

    according to my sources the council asked tesco to close that path, why would they deter customers from the store when the need them now more than ever?

    • Your sources are misiformed, sadly.

      Since this is not a marked right of way in law, and is wholly on private property (neither Ravens Court, the access road for deliveries or Tesco Car Park are under council control), the simple fact is tat Walsall Council has no power to insist on a closure, and why would it?

      If you’re interested in how a council closes a right of way, two examples can be seen locally, one with Pool Road/Lane at Chasewater, and the other the footpath at the side of the Autosmart factory in Lynn Lane, Shenstone. Although the latter is temporary, the process involves a whole mess of consultation/court orders so the idea of the council just telling Tesco to close the gap isn’t very unlikely.

      It can be seen from other Tesco designs – Walsall, the plans for the new store they had here, etc. that they don’t care a whole bunch for pedestrian traffic. Nobody could ever accuse the company of going out of their way to accommodate pedestrians.

      Since the gap is now Open again, I would suggest it was a bright idea someone drew on a plan without thinking.



  6. alvin cox says:


  7. Andy Ven says:

    Nevertheless, rattled by the competition, Asda at Bloxwich are following suit with a similar tarting up. I’m completely underwhelmed

  8. Granne Pablo says:

    It’s OK having such a shiny improved facility, but the deli & new fishmonger are still packing up at 730. Yet they’re proud to tell me their open all hours over the forthcoming ‘Olympic Sunday’s’.
    I think you nicked my turd polishing idiom, but never can a phrase be so exact in describing the cut-n-shut job that’s taken place.

    We’ll all still use it. It’s a hope & skip away – better than paying Co-Op prices in the People’s Republic of Clayhnager, & saves re-mortgaging on a field trip to Sainsbury’s Cannock.

  9. Pingback: Pity the poor landlord | BrownhillsBob's Brownhills Blog

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