Published on 2nd November 2017

People shopping along the Promenade
Regency Promenade

Cheltenham has been awarded 9th position as the best place for retail investment, beating 191 other towns and cities.

The recognition offers a strong endorsement for the borough’s strong retail offer and future growth.

Research by Knight Frank identified 200 towns and cities outside London which were best for retail investment. Cheltenham met all key tests, for example:

  • Dominating the local catchment – people are attracted to come and shop here
  • People wanting to live and work here – business are looking to relocate and invest here
  • A diverse retail offer that is growing – this is supported by the introduction of retailers such as John Lewis on the High Street
  • An extremely attractive environment – the size of the borough makes it very easy to access all great parks, events and festivals.

The report describes Cheltenham as being in the ‘premier league’ of retail centres – competing with the likes of Cambridge, Brighton and Bath. These strong performers are managing to deal with the challenges from Brexit and internet shopping. In these areas turnover volumes are holding and there has been limited change in tenant mix. Property experts Knight Frank suggest that this makes for a sound investment opportunity in these premier retail areas.

Cllr Jordan, leader for Cheltenham Borough Council commented: ‘’Cheltenham is really punching above its weight and this has been proven through the recognition that the town is one of the best places for retail investment. Our high street remains strong and has a prosperous future, with the much anticipated John Lewis opening to customers next year, the town is an ideal choice for new businesses and investors. We are also planning to deliver a programme of public realm improvements to this area of the High Street next year that will see new paving, seating, signage and planting to support bio-diversity, adding further momentum to the strength of our retail offer.’’  

Kevan Blackadder, director of Cheltenham Business Improvement District (BID), added: “There have been some concerns at recent closures of a small number of businesses in Cheltenham, but these have in the main been as part of national chain closures or relocations to better premises in the town centre.

“It’s great to know that Cheltenham is seen as being in such a strong position to benefit from future retail investment. We always believed that the opening of John Lewis next year would help stimulate it and that does seem to be the case.

Read the full Knight Frank report.


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