Customers come first

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I read in the Advertise of the traders’ wishlist which they want to present to councillors, but would they care to look up President Kennedy’s famous American speech and put it in place for Ilkeston — ‘Think not what Ilkeston can do for you, but what you can do for Ilkeston.’

A few weeks ago I walked down Bath Street, it was a few days after a heavy snowfall but the main part of Bath Street was clear. However, all down the left hand side the snow must have drifted and had been trampled and frozen solid, it was dangerous to walk on and this was at around 11am. I struggled to enter one shop only to hear the staff telling a customer who was just leaving the shop to take great care as she left because the ice was very dangerous just outside the shop door. It was the same down most of Bath Street, in fact I found only one shop that had cleared the snow and ice from their frontage and that was the ‘5 A Day’ fruit & veg shop just below Wilmot Street and I did thank the lady there for her efforts and customer consideration. Just how can the traders make demands upon the council if they have, in my opinion, no consideration themselves for the shoppers of Ilkeston, many of them elderly people who find difficulty on Bath Street without the ice?

Secondly, just what has happened to common courtesy? You can walk in a shop and the staff are so busy discussing their private lives that they cannot even acknowledge potential customers as they enter the shop.

Where is the common courtesy of a chair to help aged customers? The standard of service is in general so poor in Ilkeston, there is no wonder that shoppers go to Derby and Nottingham and use the internet.

I would further point out that I commenced my working life on Bath Street in the days when courtesy was the hallmark and Bath Street was packed with shoppers. Before the shop opened the frontage had to be swept/cleared of snow and ice, the shop was checked for cleanliness and tidied. The traders cannot expect the council to bow to their demands without taking a good hard look at their own efforts.

Alwyn Holmes,

Sudbury Avenue, Ilkeston.