I suppose we should be thankful it's not Brendan Nevin Bunkers.
Maplins and PC World were both nice to browse the aisles of, if only to keep up-to-date with what was available in affordable tech and gadgets. But I guess those days are gone, and the best options now for Stokies are:
1) For electronic widgets, sockets and wires too big for the letter-box, eBay's arrangement with the Sainsbury's Argos facilities. This allows the buyer to collect eligible small-packages from Sainsbury's Argos counter in Stoke. Although the time-out on that can be a bit tight, and if you don't get there sharpish after you order then you'll find "it's been sent back, duck".
2) For basic things like a new computer mouse and keyboard, and the occasional January Sale blink-and-it's-gone bargain, the nearest best option is probably the Staples superstore on the eastern edge of Festival Park.
3) For PC owners and courier-phobics, who need something more substantial and delicate (a new hard-drive, monitor or even a new PC), the best local alternative option is probably now Overclockers in Newcastle-under-Lyme. Overclockers are a well-regarded national PC-centric gaming hardware company, with HQ and public counter and display-space on the outskirts of the town. They make some good value gaming PCs, and have just this month taken the plunge into making well-reviewed graphics workstations for home office-based artists, graphic designers and 3D animators.
Hopefully they can do a crowdfunder now, to pay for the vet's bills and a nice field.
Update: Melvin has now been taken in by Penny Farm Horse rehabilitation centre, near Blackpool.
The Councillor and Cabinet Member for Environment responsible has just resigned, though, so there may now be some slim hope that the mad programme will be halted for good.
"The Conservatives have won two out of the three seats in Kidsgrove and Ravenscliffe".So the pavement-pounding work put in during the General Election up that way, including bringing in a serving minister (at least twice, I think), may have changed minds and then paid off in a delayed way at the local elections. The two newcomers add to two existing Conservative councillors, turning Kidsgrove a nice shade of blue. The Conservatives also unexpectedly took nearby Bradwell, which is just across the valley from Ravenscliffe as the
"several studies have shown that although vegetables take up contaminants from the soil, they do so at a low level that is unlikely to cause harm."
Trentham Park oak, by Quimby.