Saturday, 2 June 2012

Williamson's Hardware Threatened with closure!

Williamson Hardware has served Broomhill well  for 52years,but it's future is now seriously threatened.
Battling a double dip recession and a major downturn in the local student population the business is now facing warfare with it's evil landlord.
Williamson Hardware have been a tenant in the Fulwood Road block since it was completed in 1967, and have been exemplary tenants. They have never been one day late paying their rent.
The landlord is trying to conclude their tenancy having not even had the guts to contact Williamson Hardware directly. Apparently the landlord has an agreement with Sainsbury's to let them have the unit. 
In law the only way the landlord can evict the tenant at the end of a lease is to require the premises for his own use or to redevelop it. The landlord has now applied for planning permission to "redevelop" the unit. The planning application number is 12/01352/FUL
If you would like to support Williamson's fight to retain their shop in Broomhill please respond to this planning application. The Planning page of broomhillonline tells you how to do this; it's a quick and easy online process.


  1. I cannot imagine Broomhill without Williamson's and I think it is valuable in so many ways to have such a shop. Without it the very heart will have gone from Broomhill. I will look at the Planning Application.

  2. The full URL for the planning application is

    There are 11 public comments so far. Frustratingly, the web access to planning applications has been changed so that people have to register in order to comment and the information about the application timetable (closing dates, etc) seems absent.

    1. I have slightly mixed feelings here.

      a) On the one hand we have do not know how the City Council will react, albeit that the Sheffield City Council has a history of negligent planning approvals which have threatened our City. We have the absurd situation that economic decisions by a landlord have to take place through an inappropriate route because of the way tenant and landlord legislation is composed.

      b) On the other hand I would like to know more about what is involved in this tenancy. A landlord has a right to maximise profit from an investment (unless those protesting want to make up the difference, and pay the Landlord's expenses and taxes). Presumably that landlord would not care where the money came from (whether from Sainsbury or Williamsons). I would presume that Williamsons have been asked to pay a higher rent and have declined, otherwise the landlords response and approach would make no sense.

      I agree that it would be unfortunate if Williamsons were to disappear, but sadly a lot of things are going to disappear in our brave new world of government and Council meddling and the barrage of legislation and costs imposed on Landlords. We can no more legislate against the landlord wanting to preserve their own survival via the route we impose, than we can legislate against those disappearing students voting with their feet to avoid costly and pointless University degrees.

  3. This is a dreadful idea. The 'against' comments are stacking up. It's a drag having to register, but it's pretty straightforward.

  4. Does Sheffield really need another Sainsbury's in this area? Recently Sainsbury's have opened new units on Crookes, by the University tram stop and on Division Street, in addition to the one next to Crookes Valley Park/the Ponderosa.

  5. Is this a particularly well informed or ill-informed item. When one sees music hall references to Evil Landlords (boo hiss) and bar room legal advice one must assume the latter. As a lifelong resident of the area and shopper at Williamsons I would be very sorry to see them go but this is a commercial dispute not a planning matter and to incite objections to the planning application to achieve a commercial outcome is surely just as reprehensible as using commercial pressure to achieve a planning advantage. Furthermore it is a tactic that demeans the respect that I believe BANG has earned over the years and it diminishes our collective voice when we wish to be heard in the future on matters that threaten to adversely affect our unique community.

  6. As far as I am aware,Banger has been campaigining against students taking residential properties up in broomhill for some years, now they have a purpose built site on Fulwood road the students don't need washing up bowls to set up home.
    Encouraging families and couples to make a longer term commitment to the area of Broomhill is what makes a community thrive and grow. From personal experience I think Williamsons is more a victim of big stores like B&Q where you can park close to the shop and use a trolley together your goods to the car, both things I have tried and failed to do and I live in Broomhill. I went to buy compost but could not get near enough to the store to get the bulky item in my car to getting home so I gave up! If a business cannot adapt to its changing customer base it is not a business with much future anyway! There are plenty of other units Williamsons could move to.
    We need to encourage more small businesses like an artisan bakers to compliment the butchers and green grocers . Bang should be campaigning to encourage landlords to be more flexible to encourage traders to open on a short term basis, more popup shops, where locals could benefit from variety and not empty shops. Or why doesn't bang encourage landlords to allow their shop fronts to showcase local artists or something more positive to make the shopping centre interesting, attract more customers and get people to the area