12:42 Monday 04 November 2013

Residents fear Subway will have 'devastating' impact on Ely's cafes

Written byJORDAN DAY

Residents are fearing for the future of Ely’s cafes after fast food giant Subway submitted formal plans to open in the city.

The major chain has been rumoured to be coming for years but Ely News can confirm that the company has now applied for planning permission to move into the High Street.

Subway bosses want to take over the former Lloyds Pharmacy premises and turn half of the building into a Subway and the other half into a Spar shop.

Plans for the signage have been submitted to East Cambridgeshire District Council.

Ely News contacted the majority of the city’s independent cafes and sandwich bars today (Monday) to hear the views on the proposals, and all of them said they did not wish to comment.

Residents however are worried. Penny Northfield, of Columbine Road, said: “Subway is going to have a devastating impact on our independent eateries.

“I know how popular Subway is in places like Cambridge and Ely isn’t big enough to support a Subway as well as of dozens of smaller sandwich bars.

“It’s sad because the arrival of just one business could really have a huge impact on lots of individual people who are trying to earn a living for themselves and their families.”

Scott Paige, from Littleport, said: “I love Subway and it’s a hugely popular brand.

“It’ll be great to see it in Ely’s High Street but I can’t help but feel really sorry for all the city’s existing cafes, sandwich bars and bakeries.

“They currently seem to do really well and there are plenty of them, but I think they could be a thing of the past when Subway opens.”

The decision on the plans lies with the district council.

Nobody from Subway was available to comment.

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