Wouldn’t it make sense to have all supermarkets, including Waitrose, on the edges of the town where access for customers and deliveries would be easier? That would leave the town centre area off North Street available for becoming a decent sized town square. This could well have shops around, smaller shops that could serve most people’s immediate needs. This might include cafes, deli’s, grocers but not more shoe and designer clothes shops. The town would then have a more open feel to it. The edge of town stores could then all be served by free, or nearly free, minibuses like the airport car parking model. No need to have the big buses we have now clogging up the streets but smaller, more versatile ones running all day as required. That way all the residents within the town could easily do a major shop, instant needs would be met by small town centre shops and ideas such as the new Waitrose wouldn’t need to clog up the town with associated traffic. It would of course help if shop rents around my suggested open area were reasonably low so that the types of shops I mentioned could afford to be there and also some management of the types of shops that could be there. Otherwise we end up with a town we have now, full of designer shops, jewellers and shoes shops but nothing actually useful.
I suspect there are too many vested interests for many ideas to come to fruition but there’s no harm in dreaming.