Shortly before Christmas and just a couple of weeks after the final push of the local anti-Tesco campaign failed to get the Council's planning committee to block the arrival of a Tesco Express in Lower Clapton Road, I saw men preparing the site for the shop-fitting to come. The blue fence cordon around the premises is the most visible result. I don't know if an opening date has been fixed, but I doubt it is far off.
And so the scene is set for an intriguing test of the thesis that the arrival of Tesco means certain death for independent retailers with all the undesirable knock-on effects that can entail: boarded-up shops, a damaged local economy, a duller, more homogenised neighbourhood. It's not a happy thought. But as I've argued before, plenty of local people will welcome a branch of a supermarket chain - unless, that is, Tesco has made a hash of judging the market, something it is hardly famous for.