Peter Swallow, chair of Destination Chesterfield
From shops to hip bars and restaurants, our town has them all, says Destination Chesterfield's Peter Swallow
The fantastic weather we’ve experienced throughout July and August has not just boosted the economy nationally, but locally as well
According to VisitBritain, around 74 per cent of Britons have stayed in the country to take their holidays this year. The fantastic weather has given many of us no reason to head abroad this summer, instead we have found everything on our doorstep.
Later this month, Chesterfield’s visitor economy will come under the spotlight at the annual Investment Summit organised by Destination Chesterfield.
Living in Chesterfield, it’s quite easy to forget what we have on our doorstep and, instead, focus on what we don’t. Next time you are in the town centre, try looking at it through the eyes of a tourist - our historic market, the stunning crooked spire church, beautiful Queen’s Park and a plethora of independent shops. However, we cannot rely on this alone to bring footfall to the town.
As a nation, our shopping habits are changing following the increase of online shopping and the convenience out of town retail parks. This is why Chesterfield Borough Council is making a concerted effort to increase the amount of people who live and stay in the town centre. The market square and Queen’s Park regularly hosts events and old buildings are being repurposed and transformed into cafés, bars and restaurants as well as residential and hotel accommodation. It’s an exciting time.
Examples of this progress include the former Post Office that has been transformed into a new café bar and apartments, 10 apartments are being created above the Odyssey restaurant and, of course, the former Co-Op is soon to become a Premier Inn hotel, seven restaurants and a health and fitness centre.
It’s too late for the new Sorbo Lounge, that opened in the old Post Office building last month, to enter the 2018 Chesterfield Food and Drink Awards, but let’s hope we see it and more newcomers to the town’s food and drink scene at the awards next year.
If you’re one of the many Chesterfield residents that nominates the town’s cafes, restaurants, pubs and bars in the Food and Drink Awards each year, what better excuse do you need to start trying them out now?