Dear Editor,

Yet again we have two new food outlets in Andover.  

Today I have carried out a survey just in the town centre which identifies seven pubs, eight cafes, 13 restaurants and nine takeaways and there are obviously more.  

But where is the diversity which we need to attract people to Andover? There are no quality clothes, shoe or accessories shops or gift shops, let alone kitchen equipment and other diverse products.

With the government seriously worried about the obesity problems and its effects on the NHS, surely it is time we took peoples’ minds’ off food and concentrated on other things.

How about offering the many empty shops to young entrepreneurs, free of rent for one year, to encourage and new generation and show them that shops are still the things that people want to visit (but not more food unless they are good quality delicatessens etc).  

But no, what do the council do? They spend an enormous amount of money on cosmetic things in the town – so people can come and sit by the river. These people then take their cash to other towns to have a total shopping experience. 

When you consider the cost of the houses in the area and especially those in the surrounding villages there are a lot of affluent people around who must have money to spend and who must shop somewhere but certainly not in Andover.  

So come on counsellors get your act together and think of the people of Andover - all ages - and especially those who have money to spend.

Joy Preston, Anna Valley