Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Mel C: I Really, Really Don't Want Another Phone Shop

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Mel C: I Really, Really Don't Want Another Phone Shop

Article excerpt

Byline: Rob Parsons

SINGER Melanie Chisholm and actor Tom Conti have given their backing to campaigners trying to stop Hampstead being taken over by mobile phone shops.

The former Spice Girl joined a demonstration outside the new Phones4U store in the high street, where there are now seven phoneshops in a small stretch of the road.

Residents say the number of mobile phone outlets has turned Hampstead into a "bland Identikit town".

They have called on the owner of the new shop to do more to engage with the community after accusing them of showing "indifference" to the needs of small businesses.

Chisholm, 38, who lives in the area, was among a group of Hampstead residents waving placards and chanting outside the Phones4U store. She tweeted: "Go! Hampstead residents, today protesting against a new Phones4U closing another local independent shop. Come on landlords. It's all kicking off down here!" Shirley Valentine star Conti, 70, who is set to appear in Batman blockbuster The Dark Knight Rises, said: "The problem is that if all the high street is covered in phone stores and big chains like Gap, local stores can't survive because the rents are so high. …

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