LTST & LLSC New Year Message

How the CRinch tried to steal Christmas

Supporters warn Capital & Regional of the huge reputational damage being caused by opposing Luton’s regeneration plans for the town

Yet again, at the last minute before deadline day, Capital & Regional submitted a key paper objecting to Luton 2020’s development plans – right before the Christmas break. Just like the lead character in the season’s hit children’s film, The Grinch, it seems like C&R are determined to spoil things for the people of the town they claim to be part of.

Well, our message to you, CRinch, owners of the Mall, and to your directors and shareholders is loud and clear – drop your opposition to the development plans that mean so much to Luton’s future, before it is too late to salvage your company’s reputation.

Think again about the consequences of continuing to try and block the plans to build a new stadium and the much needed gateway to the town at Newlands Park.  Developments worth £250million to the local economy, bringing 10,000 new jobs. Those plans have overwhelming support locally, from across all our communities.

C&R claim to be a community based retailer, focussing on what communities they operate in want and need. They also claim to be a ‘responsible’ company. Yet when it comes to the Mall in Luton, their biggest asset and ‘cash cow’, they have shown that neither of these principles actually applies in reality. Quite the opposite.

Indeed, they have been shameless in spending vast amounts of their shareholders’ money on blatant attempts to obscure, delay and destroy what the town wants and needs. To, in their own words, kick the plans for Power Court and Newlands Park ‘into the long grass’.

Lodging yet another complaint on the eve of the Christmas break is typical of their underhand tactics. At virtually every crucial stage of the planning process C&R have lodged their key documents at the last possible moment. The company has hired external advisers and spent huge amounts on commissioning spurious and inaccurate planning reports – all with one aim in mind: to block LTFC’s plans to regenerate the town it so proudly represents.

C&R’s attempts to position itself as the protector of Luton town centre are laughable. The Mall closes its doors and effectively closes the entire centre of the town down every evening. They have invested little or nothing in The Mall, just bled it for every penny they can. We have a centre full of pound stores and eye sores, and if they have their way, the Power Court site will remain derelict.

Many of their arguments during the planning process have rapidly been shown to be totally unfounded. They have attempted to ‘persuade’ other small retail centres, with no connection to Luton, to support their objections.  They have done everything they can to steal our future from us.

We, as supporters and Lutonians, have tracked the disgraceful behaviour of this so-called community focussed business and are frankly appalled by its lies and hypocrisy. C&R are nothing but money grabbers, at any cost to the community – and indeed, to its shareholders.  And then there’s the cost to Luton, to the Council, to every tax payer and to 2020 caused by their tactics.

There’s a price to pay for that, C&R, and it may be coming your way. Company reputations take a long time to build, and can be lost, destroying shareholder value, in moments.

We suggest that you focus your energies – and your money – on trying to rebuild the C&R share price, currently plummeting, to prevent your shareholders from suffering further losses on their investment in your business…rather than meddling in Luton and trying to prevent much needed progress for our wonderful town.

In the film*, the Grinch sees the error of his ways, stops being destructive and becomes part of the community. It’s not too late for the CRinch to do the same, and withdraw all objections to the regeneration of Luton.

Tony Murray, Chair, Luton Town Supporters’ Trust

Mark Bradbury, Loyal Luton Supporters Club


*Based on the Dr Seuss book, of course!


  1. Dee Dee Murray says:

    Well said Tony. I agree with this brilliant regeneration of our town to provide a great football club & bring in thousands of jobs that have been lost over the years, ie Vauxhall, Electrolux etc. Our Luton Town need this development so much.
    So if C&R want to play silly games by objecting to this great development, they will certainly suffer big time in the future. RMC.
    Dee Dee Murray. Luton Town through & through. COYMH

  2. Jason sharp says:

    Well spoken.If CaR keep this up we should all boycott the Mall and see what they say when there shares drop.

  3. It’s almost like the decline of their share price by nearly 50% since they more directly started going against everything the community says or stands for doesn’t bother them…

    Are some of the directors playing the big short in insider trading? –

    there is no other logical explanation for why a group of people set upon the sole objective of making money should so ably and repeatedly shoot themselves in the one remaining foot still not shot away by theior actions the previous year…

  4. Patrick lynch says:

    Everything possible should be done to stop C & R becoming the one objectors to the town redevelopment and putting the town on the map, greed no ambition and above all only their selfish money grabbing and single minded tunnel vision objection and should wake up and support this great scheme,

  5. Ian Rabjohn says:

    Every word is true – when we were young the Arndale was a great place, it could be great again if C&R had the same vision as 2020 / LTFC and wanted to play their part in the regeneration of the town centre – jump on board the train C&R

  6. Terry Smith says:

    I have been a Town fan since 1966 and fully support Power Court and Newlands Park but we cannot boycott The Mall, as much as we would like to. It would have little impact on C&R but would affect the takings of the shops and therefore the people of Luton that work there. Unfortunately I cannot think of any way of hitting C&R financially.

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