It is all very well of Theresa Villiers MP (Soapbox, September 11) to say we don’t need any more stores in New Barnet when residents often shop elsewhere, and she well knows that it is very likely planning permission will be granted without much of a struggle.

Instead of trying to negotiate the best deal possible, which in any case would ironically put some developers off, Barnet Council, run by a cabal of arrogant Conservatives representing a minority of the voters, has refused to enter into a positive dialogue with Asda. As a result, after some initial bluster, it is a rather soft touch with developers. While the junction of Albert Road with East Barnet Road will be rejigged to ease congestion (at one stage the Tories installed traffic lights here, causing polluting queues to form), nothing is being done by the shadow transport minister in the first place to discourage short car journeys.

Rather than press Asda for a feasibility study on replacing the existing foot tunnel from Cromer Road to Victoria Park with one at ground level, the council will be happy to accept some section 106 money without even knowing how much the alternative of a ramp on the western side of the mainline railway, to match the one proposed by Asda, would cost to install.

Without this, walkers will be met with a steep flight of steps, rather than what could be a pleasant ground-level route all the way to Clifford Road for walkers and cyclists — provided that, when Cromer Road School is redeveloped, my proposals (which I submitted to the initial consultation last January) for improving the western end of this ancient footpath are acted upon.

David Nowell, president of Chipping Barnet Liberal Democrats, Lytton Road, New Barnet