A supermarket has agreed to remove controversial spikes from outside one of its Canterbury stores following claims they were “anti-homeless”. The metal studs were installed on the window ledges of the Tesco Express branch in Whitefriars to stop people from congregating.
The retail giant denies they were ever put in to keep rough sleepers away, but has agreed to take them away to appease customers. Spokesman Jack Pearson said:
“This is a windowsill. It is 30 centimetres wide. It is not an anti-homeless measure, nor is it a place where people would be able to sleep. However, we recognise that some customers may have concerns, so to reassure them, we will remove the studs and introduce a different solution.”
Tesco bosses faced similar controversy at their Regent Street branch in central London earlier this month, which was hit with days of protest against the studs. The outrage came to a head when the store was targeted by activists who poured concrete over the spikes before fleeing. Police were called and supermarket chiefs — who insisted the studs were only installed to ward off anti-social behaviour subsequently decided to remove them.
Herne Bay Gazette, June 26th 2014