Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 11°C

min temp: 10°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Bury St Edmunds: Latest figures show town’s economy is booming

10:13 13 June 2014

Council leader John Griffiths and councillor Alaric Pugh in the town centre, in Bury St Edmunds.

Council leader John Griffiths and councillor Alaric Pugh in the town centre, in Bury St Edmunds.

Archant

The historic market town of Bury St Edmunds was last night hailed a “remarkable economic success story” as latest figures revealed that the centre is booming.

Footfall is up and the number of empty shops is down - bucking the national trend with many areas still struggling to emerge from the recession.

According to the statistics, released by St Edmundsbury Borough Council, the number of vacant premises last July was 10.5% – outside the 5-10% deemed healthy by the Association of Town Centre Management. However that figure is now down to 6.5%, which is below the national rate of 10.6%.

Meanwhile, high street footfall has risen by 2.4%, while the UK average has fallen by 1.4%.

The number of people using the borough council’s car parks has also rocketed from about 1.7million five years ago to just under 2.1m in 2013/14.

John Griffiths, leader of St Edmundsbury Borough Council, said: “I too often read of doom and gloom – that our car parks are empty, our shops are closing, and our market traders are downbeat.

“The reality of course is the opposite. Bury is both a lovely historic town – with great people, facilities, attractions and businesses – and a remarkable economic success story.”

He said this was the result of long-term thinking and hard work by St Edmundsbury’s officers together with residents, businesses and partners, including Ourburystedmunds (the town’s business improvement district group), Bury in Bloom, the police and the town council.

Events like the Whitsun Fayre, organised by Ourburystedmunds, have boosted footfall and a new youth market, run by the borough council, has welcomed several new stalls as part of a food aisle.

There have been some recent shop closures, including Cafe Waffle in the Buttermarket, but also new additions to the high street, such as Côte Brasserie.

Mr Griffiths said: “There will always be casualties, and successes, on high streets, but here we have anticipated challenges like online retailing and recessions, and made sure that our town centre is a destination of choice, attracting more shoppers and visitors alike.”

Ourburystedmunds chief executive Mark Cordell said: “Bury is seen as a place to visit and retains its place as one of the top visitor destinations in East Anglia.”

Darren Old, chairman of the town’s branch of the National Market Traders’ Federation, said while the market had not yet returned to the turnover of 2007/08, but the optimism was there.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other East Anglian Daily Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by East Anglian Daily Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique East Anglian Daily Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

A judge has said

A judge has warned of the dangers of “vulnerable and impressionable” people watching films or playing video games depicting gang violence and rape after sentencing a Colchester man who planned to tie up a woman and have sex with her after playing Grand Theft Auto.

(left to right) Acting Chief Superintendent Kim Warner of Suffolk Police speaks alongside mother of missing 23-year-old Corrie McKeague, Nicola Urquhart and his brothers Darroch and Makeyan McKeague, during a press conference  at Bury St Edmunds Police Station in Suffolk, as police are investigating the disappearance of the RAF serviceman, who has been missing for more than a week amid fears he may have been kidnapped. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Monday October 3, 2016. See PA story POLICE McKeague. Photo credit should read: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

The police hunt for missing RAF gunner Corrie McKeague has been labelled “incompetent” by his mother, as an online campaign has raised more than £15,000 to hire a private investigator.

File picture of Essex Police officers carrying out a drug warrant.

Drug paraphernalia and plant growing equipment were seized from a house in Essex.

East Bergholt village centre.

Residents living in a picturesque village in the heart of Constable country have taken their battle to block a development they believe will be a blot on the landscape made famous by the artist to London’s High Court.

Shadow Brexit secretary Keir Starmer speaks in the House of Commons, London

MPs signalled they would back Theresa May’s timetable to leave the European Union after a last minute concession that she would publish her plan for Brexit first.

File picture of a police road closed sign.

There were long delays in Braintree tonight due to a crash.

The crash happened in Sudbury.

A group of people ran away from the scene of a four-vehicle crash in Sudbury today.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

MyDate24 MyPhotos24