Rival town developers in conciliatory talks

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TWO developers at the centre of plans for Spalding will meet today to discuss the best way forward to bring the greatest benefits to the town.

After an angry telephone call last week between Michael Moran, who wants to develop Holland Market, and Richard Garvie, who wants to bring a supermarket to a site in Holbeach Road, the initial frostiness between the pair appears to have thawed.

Mr Moran had demanded Mr Garvie retract a statement in last week’s Spalding Guardian in which he claimed Holland Market redevelopment would bring little benefit to the people of Spalding.

But after an initial meeting, which Mr Garvie described as “informative and positive”, the two men are hoping to meet again today to talk about the future.

Mr Garvie said: “I don’t want to say too much at this stage, but I was quite impressed with what is now being proposed by Corbo.

“I have said all along that whatever happens needs to be in the best interest of the town, and if Holland Market was proven to be the best site in terms of what it can offer the town then we would be silly not to support it.”

However, Mr Garvie says he still believes in what he is trying to do at the A151 site, which he claims would bring a wide range of benefits in the way of a cinema, £5million of Section 106 money and the creation of a regeneration company that will go on to generate millions of pounds worth of investment and employment opportunities.

He added: “It really is about weighing up the benefits and looking at what provides the greatest net benefit for the town.”

Mr Garvie, a former Tulip Radio presenter, said he expected his plans to take an exciting step forward yesterday as he met with investors to discuss plans to bring a big-name supermarket to the 12-acre site opposite Mcdonald’s.

In an open letter to Spalding Guardian readers, which appears in full at www.spaldingtoday.co.uk, Mr Garvie defended himself against critics who have accused him of “being in it for a quick buck”.

He said: “What this town needs is more people who are prepared to do things for the love of the town, not for what is in it for them.

“This scheme is just one small part of my overall vision for the town, and whether it goes forward or not, I can feel comfortable that at least I have tried to move the town forward rather than sitting back and waiting for others to do it.”