Ledbury traders have spoken about a bumper Easter for the town - but there are concerns about the impact of the Ukraine war and the cost of living crisis on shopping habits.

A number of Easter events taking place in Ledbury, Malvern and throughout Herefordshire brought visitors to the area, resulting in a boost to High Street shops.

Annette Crowe, of jewllery shop Past & Present, said: “We had a good Easter - on the days when events were advertised the town was extremely busy.

“We had lots of people from outside the county coming into our shop, people who were staying in the area.

“Since the end of the first lockdown, business has been the best it’s ever been. It’s fantastic.”

But she added: “I am concerned with price increases and how they will affect people’s spending, especially with us being in the luxury market. People still have birthdays and anniversaries and they still get married, but it’s bound to affect people.”

Laura Panter, of The Ledbury Pet Co., said there was a lovely atmosphere in the town centre over Easter with lots of people staying at campsites around Ledbury.

"Good Friday and Easter Saturday were so much better than we could have expected," she said. "People were coming in with family they hadn't seen since before the lockdown, getting their dog ice cream and just enjoying the town because Ledbury is beautiful."

Ledbury Reporter: The Oak Inn was fully booked over EasterThe Oak Inn was fully booked over Easter (Image: Newsquest)

Chris Howell, landlord at the Oak Inn at Staplow, said: “We had a fabulous Easter.

“The weather was so nice, our four guest rooms were fully booked and our customers enjoyed our outdoor shaded patio area and beer garden.

“Plus our guest head Michelin star chef Jason Henderson worked over Easter - and introduced a few of his signature dishes including scallops, moules frites, trout and lamb rump.

'Uncertainty around the increased cost of living'

“Easter Sunday saw us full to the rafters for Heather’s roast and we had a record number of covers for a Sunday Lunch.”

Patricia Harrison, who runs Ceci Paolo in the High Street, said the deli, fashion and homeware sides of the business had been performing differently.

“The targets for the Easter week were met but the buildup to Easter had been slower than targeted,” she said.

“After a good Christmas, overall performance this year to Easter was quite disappointing. This was probably due to an overall malaise in the retail economy brought about by political factors such as the war in Ukraine and uncertainty around the increased cost of living.”

She said one area that has shown improvement is premium kitchenware brand Le Creuset.

“This very much links in with people treating themselves to new cooking equipment and experimenting with new recipes at home,” she said.