Ipswich: Quirky and vintage stores put themselves on the map

Cathy Frost of Love One and Jess Bradley of Berry Blue Hat with the Vintage Ipswich walking map

Cathy Frost of Love One and Jess Bradley of Berry Blue Hat with the Vintage Ipswich walking map - Credit: Contributed

A GROUP of independent traders is championing the cause of some of the most unusual traders and shops in Ipswich, by launching a Vintage Ipswich Shopping walking map.

The map, linking together a number of the unusual, quirky and vintage shops in the town centre, is intended to be a guide for tourists and visitors, and for local people who can be surprised by the variety that is on offer.

Shops featured include fashion and books, antiques, household goods and furniture, records and a couple of places to stop off for a tea or coffee before continuing the trail.

Cathy Frost, of Love One in St Peter’s Street, said: “The town has got a lot going for it, including lovely streets like this one.

“Often it seems like visitors from away, and tourists, appreciate our town more than some of us do who live here all the time.

“I am a great champion for the town centre. It is a great town for people walking around, to appreciate the buildings and the independent shops.

“There are some beautiful parts of the town centre. How many town centres still have a record shop? “I was in Out of Time Records the other day to buy a present.

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“Shopping can be very bland but independent traders can interact with their customers and make it much more of a positive experience.

“There are some very interesting and unusual business in town, but we are a bit spread out, so we thought a walking map would be a good idea.

“The town centre is a destination and we have to make it more of one for shoppers, both locally and further away.

“It is a challenging time for the high street so it is important to come up with new ideas.

“It is important for businesses to work together.

“We get a lot of visitors from further away, especially in the summer, We have some super events like Ip-Art and Maritime Ipswich but perhaps we don’t shout out enough about them.

“The introduction of the vintage map has gone well. The feedback has been really positive.”

The map has been designed by Jess Bradley of Betty Blue Hat, the antiques and collectibles business.

She said: “Most of the vintages businesses are on the fringes of the town centre. We wanted to make it really easy for people to find us. We want to make it obvious where we are.”

Slightly further ahead, a number of the independent traders are supporting a vintage market within Ipswich Town Hall on March 17, while the next St Peter’s Street Market is planned for June 23.

The free Vintage Ipswich map has been designed and drawn by Ms Bradley, of Betty Blue Hat, which specialises in vintage clothing and furniture.

It is available from Ipswich Tourist Information Centre and participating businesses.

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