Retailers queue up to get into town

OVER 70 retailers want to open shops in Colchester, a report leaked to the EADT reveals.The report, produced for Colchester Borough Council by consultants CB Richard Ellis for the Vineyard Gate development project, found that in April last year there were 72 retailers looking for shops in Colchester.

By Juliette Maxam

OVER 70 retailers want to open shops in Colchester, a report leaked to the EADT reveals.

The report, produced for Colchester Borough Council by consultants CB Richard Ellis for the Vineyard Gate development project, found that in April last year there were 72 retailers looking for shops in Colchester.

These included big names such as Wallis, Senza, Republic, George, Nike, Zara and The Pier.

The report also claims that while Colchester is perceived to be a quality alternative to shopping in Ipswich and Chelmsford, it actually has less shop floor space and fewer “quality retailers” in modern shops.

The Vineyard Gate development will see House of Fraser open in the town and about 70 new shop units created, with the regeneration of the St Botolph's area of Colchester town centre, including moving the bus station.

Most Read

Meanwhile, a boss from the town's award-winning independent department store hit out at train operator One for not including Colchester in a shopping guide published in the latest edition of its magazine

The January to March edition of One Life, a free magazine available to train passengers, has a two page shopping guide featuring Bury St Edmunds, Norwich, Chelmsford, Cambridge and Ipswich. There is also information about Clacton, Braintree, Saffron Walden, Long Melford, Coggeshall and Hertford.

Julie Hayward, merchandise of Williams and Griffin, in Colchester, said she was “flabbergasted” that Colchester was not included in the feature.

Miss Hayward picked up a copy of the magazine on a train journey the day before Williams and Griffin held a celebration weekend following its success at being named UK's best independent store by Draper's Magazine.

“I was flabbergasted to see there was such a fabulous spread on shopping in the region and there was not a single mention of Colchester,” said Miss Hayward, who is writing to complain to One.

She passed on her concerns to the Mayoress of Colchester, Wilma Sutton, who said: “I think it's awful. We are such a prestigious town and One have not included us in this feature.”

A spokeswoman from One said the magazine, which is produced by PA Entertainment, targets areas when the company wants to encourage more train travel.

“In each issue we do pieces about different parts of the region. There are so many towns in the region, we can't include everywhere,” she added. She said Williams and Griffin could perhaps work with PA Entertainment on an article for a future issue.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter