High Town traders speak as Old Market hits one-month mark

Ledbury Reporter: (6543808) (6543808)

WITH Hereford’s new shopping blueprint hitting the one-month mark, reactions to the Old Market remain mixed, but many of the city’s existing traders are positive about the early signs.

Across Newmarket Street, the first shops of the new development opened on May 1, joined in the following weeks by restaurants, and a six-screen cinema.

The Old Market was always projected to bring more people in from the surrounding market towns – and offer an alternative to the likes of Worcester and Cardiff.

And the hope from High Town shopkeepers was that the trade would trickle across; more shoppers would mean more business for everyone.

One of the main beneficiaries has been Widemarsh Street – an area where many shops have closed over the past two years – which finds itself as the main thoroughfare between the two ‘centres’.

Andy Jones, who works at Neil Powell Butchers on Widemarsh Street, said he has noticed the increase in footfall since the Old Market opened.

He said: “It’s been positive for us. The shop’s definitely been busier than usual. We’re well-placed for the extra footfall, but it’s good to see the town busy. It’s about time there was something like this in Hereford.”

The opening weekend saw thousands come to Hereford to shop, and 'events' like a Friday food festival aim to push High Town as the home of independent trading.

However that boost in footfall may not yet be being felt citywide.

Expressions, on Broad Street, has seen similar trade to previous years, while Chrurch Street traders said mixed weather and school holidays have made it difficult to gauge the impact.

Jill Generalovich, who runs health food store Fodder on Church Street said: "I think the next month will be more revealing; it's so soon, and because we have had bank holidays and half term it's difficult to tell whether general footfall is up or down.

"I do think that we have loyal customers – we've been here for a while – and they come to us, specifically, for a reason.”

Charlotte Preedy, who works in the gift shop Expressions, said: “The opening hasn't really affected our footfall.

“But we’re hoping that in the summer it'll attract even more tourists who will venture over to our side too.

“We’re feeling positive about the development and the future.”

Comments (11)

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9:10am Thu 29 May 14

Old Herefordian says...

Good to see that some traders in Church Street (my favourite street in Hereford) are being proactive and letting the world know they are there through a website at www.churchstreethere
ford.co.uk.
Good to see that some traders in Church Street (my favourite street in Hereford) are being proactive and letting the world know they are there through a website at www.churchstreethere ford.co.uk. Old Herefordian
  • Score: 9

9:11am Thu 29 May 14

Old Herefordian says...

That should of course be www.churchstreethere
ford.co.uk
That should of course be www.churchstreethere ford.co.uk Old Herefordian
  • Score: 3

9:12am Thu 29 May 14

Old Herefordian says...

No idea why the url has split in two.
No idea why the url has split in two. Old Herefordian
  • Score: -3

9:18am Thu 29 May 14

TwoWheelsGood says...

And what news of that 'jewel in the crown' the Buttermarket? Cynically exploited and misled by the defunct Hereford Futile's and dropped like a hot potato once the OLM deal was done.
And what news of that 'jewel in the crown' the Buttermarket? Cynically exploited and misled by the defunct Hereford Futile's and dropped like a hot potato once the OLM deal was done. TwoWheelsGood
  • Score: 4

1:31pm Thu 29 May 14

Rev.JohnnyElder says...

I may be of advanced years to some and totally agree that the new centre adds a powerful Christian message to all shoppers but ask this of you, Is it legal to travel down a road in reverse, as long as your following the direction of the traffic?

I for one cannot stand him, Cowell of BGT, he extends his entertainment leg and ankle way below his hem.

Why does Hereford allow this?

Peace to you all.
I may be of advanced years to some and totally agree that the new centre adds a powerful Christian message to all shoppers but ask this of you, Is it legal to travel down a road in reverse, as long as your following the direction of the traffic? I for one cannot stand him, Cowell of BGT, he extends his entertainment leg and ankle way below his hem. Why does Hereford allow this? Peace to you all. Rev.JohnnyElder
  • Score: -22

2:04pm Thu 29 May 14

Redbird says...

Before we get carried away the city centre - that is High Town- needs the empty shops to be filled with interesting, (not betting shops) ideally independent stores ,and lead people down Church street, which according to a couple of shop keeprs I know has less foot fall then before. I am cautiously optimistic that the new centre will, in time, bring people in to the town centre but help should be given to new business in the same way that help has been given to Debenhams, Waitrose etc. ie rent holidays - I'm reliably informed that the new centre has given them until 2020 without rates. If this is incorrect then I would appreciate someone in the know explaining things and letting us all know what incentives are in place to fill the empty shops and get the owners of the burnt out building to get the renovation work done this year!
Before we get carried away the city centre - that is High Town- needs the empty shops to be filled with interesting, (not betting shops) ideally independent stores ,and lead people down Church street, which according to a couple of shop keeprs I know has less foot fall then before. I am cautiously optimistic that the new centre will, in time, bring people in to the town centre but help should be given to new business in the same way that help has been given to Debenhams, Waitrose etc. ie rent holidays - I'm reliably informed that the new centre has given them until 2020 without rates. If this is incorrect then I would appreciate someone in the know explaining things and letting us all know what incentives are in place to fill the empty shops and get the owners of the burnt out building to get the renovation work done this year! Redbird
  • Score: 11

3:29pm Thu 29 May 14

Rev.JohnnyElder says...

You are both incorrect and a gossip monger, there's a name for your kind.

Kindness from within is alike a candle, it will go out with a poof! Wise words from a wise men.

Rev Johnny Elder
You are both incorrect and a gossip monger, there's a name for your kind. Kindness from within is alike a candle, it will go out with a poof! Wise words from a wise men. Rev Johnny Elder Rev.JohnnyElder
  • Score: -13

4:01pm Thu 29 May 14

reecheddarchick says...

Someone ring the Stonebow Unit...the Rev has lost the plot!!
Someone ring the Stonebow Unit...the Rev has lost the plot!! reecheddarchick
  • Score: 11

5:42pm Thu 29 May 14

oldergit says...

Another empty property in High Town now Nat. West is going. Give with one hand, take away with the other.
Another empty property in High Town now Nat. West is going. Give with one hand, take away with the other. oldergit
  • Score: 5

11:43pm Fri 30 May 14

Hereford person says...

Nice to see the usual buffoons supporting the city.
Nice to see the usual buffoons supporting the city. Hereford person
  • Score: 2

12:29pm Tue 3 Jun 14

Bindi2014 says...

I Have Now Nicknamed High Town "Die Town" Hardly Anything There Worth Going To, Plus 4 Years On River Island Still Has Scaffolding Up, They Built The Market Quite Quick, Why Can't Sorting That Out Be Next
I Have Now Nicknamed High Town "Die Town" Hardly Anything There Worth Going To, Plus 4 Years On River Island Still Has Scaffolding Up, They Built The Market Quite Quick, Why Can't Sorting That Out Be Next Bindi2014
  • Score: 0

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