On the same tack ie anytown UK look about Penzance, I see that the local MP for Penzance last month asked the secretary of state for trade and industry what recent assessment his Department has made of the likely impact of below-cost selling by supermarkets on the future of market choice for consumers.
The reply he received isn't particularly helpful, but it was, "Competition in the grocery sector is a matter for the independent competition authorities and not the DTI. The Office of Fair Trading identified below-cost selling as an issue that could distort competition when it referred the grocery market to the Competition Commission for a market inquiry.
It is for the Competition Commission to make an assessment and decide if any action is necessary."
To quote a New Economics Foundation document, "....it seems as that another mass extinction event may be occurring too â€“ one affecting the character of the places we live, and the diversity at the heart of our culture, whether films, music, books or other media."
Our town centres are rapidly turning into 'clone towns' where diversity is destroyed - some of the more subtle threats are from the high-street â€˜micro-formatâ€™ supermarket stores. So apart from all the mobile phone shops we are getting the superstores setting up their town centre outlets e.g. Sainsburyâ€™s Local outlets, Tesco Express stores and Co-op town centre stores all wanting to use their corporate image for their shop fronts. Small shop owners can't compete with their economic clout.