9th November 2010
Campaigners thank ASDA and hope that their store on Lavender Hill is back in Battersea for good, after it fell into the Clapham-trap for a second time
After a very silly flip flop by ASDA, when it first ditched the much advertised December 2008 re-launched name "ASDA Clapham Junction, Battersea" to correct its mistake of calling its Lavender Hill store "ASDA Clapham", and then re-launched in 2010 as "ASDA Clapham", the retail giant has flipped (or shall we say SW11tched) again and proudly (?) announced that it is to be re-launched as......yes, you guessed it: "ASDA Clapham Junction, Battersea"!
Of course, we very much welcome this change of heart, after a big response from across the Battersea community who were insulted by ASDA's naming of Lavender Hill as being a part of Clapham. But we wish so much that ASDA would have done this with greater sensitivity and good grace, instead of trying to justify itself for too long, without realising what a dis-service they have done to the good name of Battersea.
We thank our local Battersea MP, Jane Ellison and local Councillor James Cousins, and The Battersea Society who were particularly active in campaigning for ASDA to change their terrible mistaken rebrand as "ASDA Clapham" and SW11tch Back to Battersea.
Supporters can see news on James' blog:
and his expose of ASDA's claim to have always been "ASDA Clapham":
Also thanks to the Clapham Junction Action Group who also spoke out against ASDA's decision:
The Wandsworth Guardian held their own online poll with the following results:
What should the store be called?
ASDA Battersea - 83%
ASDA Clapham - 5%
The Battersea Society held a poll asking people where they thought ASDA on Lavender Hill was located are the results were:
Battersea - 98.2%
Clapham - 1.8%
ASDA have announced that they are making the change (it hasn't happened yet, as the signage shows) after holding a "ballot" of its customers. We think that this is not the way a place should be named and that ASDA's senior management should have shown more leadership and geographic awareness by immediately accepting their error and correcting it straight away without having to discover from their customers where the store is located.
But nonetheless we are still delighted that they have relented.
Here is ASDA's Press Release.....not quite as warm and cheerful as the one they issued in 2008 (see: >>>), but it confirms the good news anyway:
We sincerely hope that this time ASDA really mean it and that their claim of pride in the area will translate and grow into interested knowledge of the community's proud history and geography.
So, come on Mr Mick Beck - show some Love for Battersea and it will be sure to show some back to you. You can indeed be a SW11tch hero. Don't be shy, and don't feel embarrassed about recent events, Battersea people are very forgiving and bursting with love for all those who love Battersea.
We look forward to seeing a wholesale rebrand of name and the removal of all references to "Clapham" at ASDA's 'Battersea' store.
Thank you ASDA and thank you Mick, and thank you most of all to the wonderful Battersea people who stood firm and united to defend the identity and integrity of Battersea.
As has been learned, it is all too easy for companies to ignore local pride and sensitivity. We earnestly hope that some lessons will have been drawn from the story by ASDA's senior management that they will use to good effect in other locations throughout the UK, and also other companies who wrongly name the communities they operate within, and encourage corporate entities to get much closer to the people and places they put down roots within.
Welcome Back to Battersea ASDA !!!